Mable Burton Ringling

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Mable Burton Ringling
Born(1875-03-14)March 14, 1875
DiedJune 8, 1929(1929-06-08) (aged 54)
OccupationArt collector
Known forCreated the John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art

Mable Burton Ringling (March 14, 1875 – June 8, 1929) was an art collector who with her husband created the John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art.


She was born in Moons, Ohio on March 14, 1875.[1] She had four sisters and one brother. Mable left her Ohio factory job and headed to Chicago in pursuit of a husband. There in Chicago, she met John Nicholas Ringling. They wed in Hoboken, New Jersey when Mable was 30 and John was 39 years old.[2] John and Mabel, in 1924, began the creation of their dream home in Sarasota, Florida. They called the house Cà d'Zan, meaning 'House of John'. Mable, however, played a much larger role in the creation of the home. In fact, the blue prints were titled Mrs. John Ringling's Home. Two years and two million dollars later the home was finished. Mable hand picked items for her home at estate auctions and on her travels to Europe. She filled the home with Venetian style decor and several shades of green, because green was her favorite color. Her rose garden was her passion, and she chose to have her room face her beloved rose garden rather than face the Sarasota Bay. John and Mabel never had children, but they had a passion for their animals. Mable had gates installed in the home, so the pets could roam through the house while being kept out of the eating areas. She died on June 8, 1929, at the age of fifty-four due to Addison's Disease and Diabetes.[3][4][5] In 1991, John and Mable Ringling and his sister, Ida Ringling North, were moved and buried at the John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art, just in front and to the right of the Ca d'Zan. It is behind the Secret Garden.


  1. ^ Fayette Co., Perry Twp., Ohio Birth Records lists Armilda (Mable) Burton's birth as 14 March 1875
  2. ^ "John Ringling". Mable Burton Ringling was born March 4, 1875 in Moons, Ohio. John and Mable was married in Hoboken, New Jersey. She was 30, and he was 39.
  3. ^ "John (1866-1936) and Mable (1875-1929) Ringling". Ringling Museum. Archived from the original on February 3, 2009. Retrieved 2009-02-12. Her origins can be traced to Moons, Ohio, a farm community. Born there on March 14, 1875, she had four sisters and one brother. By the turn of the century, she had moved away from Ohio to earn a living. Various stories exist that describe how she and John Ringling met. She had strong ties with her family, who visited Sarasota often or moved to the area. Dulcie Shueler, Alma Reid, and Mrs. B. C. Workman, her three sisters, all spent a good part of the year here. Her brother, Earl Burton, lived in Tampa, Florida.
  4. ^ "Mrs. John Ringling Dies". New York Times. June 9, 1929. Retrieved 2009-02-12. Wife of Circus Owner and Oil Developer Ill Only a Short Time.
  5. ^ "Mrs. John Ringling, Wife Of Circus Owner, Dead". Washington Post. June 9, 1929. Retrieved 2009-02-12.