Cole Bros. Circus

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The Cole Bros. Circus was a medium-sized American circus. It was founded in 1884 as "W.W. Cole’s New Colossal Shows", by William Washington Cole. In the 1930s, the circus employed two noted animal trainers, Clyde Beatty and Allen King, both of whom traveled in their own railroad cars.[1] Another well-known performer with the circus was Bob Strehlau Juggles the Clown.[2]

1884 advertisement

As of 2014, Cole Bros. Circus was one of the few traditional circuses in the United States that remains under the Big Top tent.[3][4][5] As of 2016 the show was essentially defunct, largely in response to animal rights activists advocating against the use of animals for live performances.[6]

Alternative names[edit]

  • W.W. Cole’s New Colossal Shows
  • Clyde Beatty Cole Bros. Circus - 1957
  • Cole Bros. Circus
  • Cole Bros. Circus Worlds Largest Circus Under The Big Top
  • Cole Bros. Circus Of The Stars

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Atwell, Harry A. (1935). "Cole Bros. Circus". World Digital Library. Retrieved 22 January 2014.
  2. ^ Spychalla, Craig (September 24, 2010). "Send in the Clown: Bob the Clown's daughter talks about discovering the man behind the face paint and his Hall of Fame induction in Baraboo". Portage Daily Register. Retrieved 22 January 2014.
  3. ^ "Cole Bros. History: W.W. Cole's Legacy Lives On". Cole Bros. Circus of Stars. Retrieved 22 January 2014.
  4. ^ Bauer, Peter. "Circus Brings Back Tigers". Archived 2014-02-02 at the Wayback Machine The DeLand-Deltona Beacon. Mar 19, 2010. Retrieved 22 January 2014
  5. ^ Audrey Parente. "A Look Behind the Scenes as the Cole Brothers Circus starts its Spring Tour". The Daytona Beach News-Journal. March 9, 2013. Retrieved 22 January 2014.
  6. ^ Wilson, Drew C. (2016-03-30). "Off again, off again, Cole Brothers Circus cancels Havelock shows". Havelock News. Archived from the original on 2016-04-02.
  7. ^ "Circus: Cole Bros. Circus, 1935-1952". The Circus in America. Retrieved 22 January 2014.

External links[edit]