TABLE OF CONTENTS


Descriptive Summary of the Collection

Administrative Information

Biography of Irving Kane Pond

Scope and Content of the Collection

Organization

Selected Search Terms

Container List

Series 1: Publications, 1891-1939,bulk 1920-1939

Series 2: Visual Materials, 1895-1939,bulk 1920-1937

Series 3: Oversize Materials, 1891-1939,bulk 1920-1939

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American Circus Collection, 1891-1939


The Newberry Library
Roger and Julie Baskes Department of Special Collections
60 West Walton Street
Chicago, Illinois 60610-7324
USA
Phone: 312-255-3506
Fax: 312-255-3646
E-Mail: specialcolls@newberry.org
URL: http://www.newberry.org

Machine-readable finding aid encoded by Lisa Janssen, 2005.

©2005.


Descriptive Summary of the Collection

Collector Pond, Irving Kane, 1857-1939
Title American Circus Collection
Dates 1891-1939
Extent 5.8 linear feet (5 boxes and 2 oversize boxes)
Abstract Late 19th and early 20th century circus and theater related illustrations, publicity, programs, photographs and memorabilia, collected by Chicago architect Irving Kane Pond (1857-1939).
Language Materials are in English.
Repository Newberry Library, Roger and Julie Baskes Department of Special Collections
Collection Call Number Midwest MS AmCircus
Collection Stack Location 3a 36 1, oversize material 4 21 13

Administrative Information

Cite As

American Circus Collection, The Newberry Library, Chicago.

Provenance

Gift of Irving Kane Pond, 1939

Processed by

Jo Ellen McKillop Dickie, 2004.

Access

The American Circus Collection is open for research in the Special Collections Reading Room; 1 box at a time (Priority III).

Ownership and Literary Rights

The American Circus Collection is the physical property of the Newberry Library. Copyright may belong to the authors or their legal heirs or assigns. For permission to publish or reproduce any materials from this collection, contact the Roger and Julie Baskes Department of Special Collections.

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Biography of Irving Kane Pond

Chicago architect; founder of several literary and civic organizations.

Born in Ann Arbor, Michigan in 1857, Irving Kane Pond received a degree in civil engineering from the University of Michigan and began his architectural career at the Chicago offices of William Le Baron Jenney and Solon S. Beman. While employed at Beman's firm, he worked on the initial design of the Pullman company town and in 1885 formed Pond & Pond Architects with his brother Allen B. Pond.

Pond & Pond's buildings typify Arts & Crafts-style architecture and are considered some of the best examples in Chicago. The firm designed several settlement and civic institutions including, Jane Addams Hull House, Northwestern Settlement, the American Correspondence School and Chicago Commons.

Pond's interest in promoting the fine arts and social betterment led to his involvement with several architectural and literary clubs; including Little Room, Cliff Dwellers and the Chicago Literary Club. Pond served as the president of the American Institute of Architects and vice president of the Circus Fans Association.

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Scope and Content of the Collection

Circus and theater related clippings, illustrations, programs, publicity, photographs, and memorabilia donated by Irving Kane Pond, 1891-1939.

The bulk of material consists of Circus programs and reviews and Circus Fans Association material dating from the 1920'-1930's. The Circus programs illustrate over twenty circuses. The theater publications represent a diverse array of Chicago and Midwest theaters. A small collection of photographs document performers and circus life at the turn of the 20th century. Pond's illustrations and drawings created for his book titled, Big Top Rhythms, highlight a variety circus acts. The remainder of the collection consists of circus clippings, publicity and memorabilia.

Narrative descriptions of the subject matter, types of material, and arrangement of each series are available through the Organization section of the finding aid.

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Organization

Papers are organized in the following series:

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Selected Search Terms

The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the Newberry Library's public catalog. Researchers desiring additional materials on a particular topic should search the catalog using these headings.

Names

  • AL.G. Barnes Circus
  • Bertram Mills’ Circus
  • Buffalo Bill, 1846-1917
  • Circus Fans Association of America
  • Cliff Dwellers (Club)
  • Clyde Beatty-Cole Brothers Circus
  • Hagenbeck- Wallace
  • Pond, Irving Kane, 1857-1930
  • Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey Combined Shows
  • Russell Brothers Circus
  • Sells Floto
  • United States. Works Progress Administration

Subjects

  • Advertising -- Circus
  • Century of Progress International Exposition (1933-1934: Chicago, Ill.)
  • Circus
  • Circus performers
  • Circus -- United States
  • Circus animals
  • Circus in Art
  • Circus trains
  • Clippings
  • Manuscripts, American
  • Minstrel shows
  • Photographs
  • Theater
  • Theater programs

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Container List

Series 1: Publications, 1891-1939, bulk 1920-1939

Circus related clippings, route cards, programs and circus reviews. Circus memorabilia includes a variety of holiday greeting cards from performers to Mr. Pond. Includes published works by Irving Pond and Al Priddy describing circus life at the turn of the 20th century. Route cards include an official route book of the 1937 tenting season of the Works Progress Administration circus. Publicity materials include window cards and heralds publicizing a variety of circuses. A collection of theater programs from the Midwest and Chicago includes Cliff Dwellers Minstrel Shows and performances at Hull House. A variety of Circus Fans Association material and ephemera documents the history of this group and includes a complete run of their monthly periodical, White Tops, 1927-1939.
Arranged by type of material and then alphabetically.

Box Folder Contents
1 1 Circus Booklets and Periodicals, 1924-1937
1 2 Circus Clippings and Articles, 1907-1939
1 3 Circus Memorabilia, ca. 1930's
1 4 Circus Programs and Reviews - A.L. G. Barnes, 1931-1936
1 5 Circus Programs and Reviews - Bertram Mills, 1936-1939
1 6 Circus Programs and Reviews - Chapmans-Cole Brothers, 1925-1938
1 7 Circus Programs and Reviews-Empire - Greater European Olympia, ca. 1930's
1 8 Circus Programs and Reviews - Hagenbeck Wallace, 1927-1933
1 9 Circus Programs and Reviews - Hagenbeck Wallace, 1934-1937
1 10 Circus Programs and Reviews - Liverpool Stadium and Old Time Yankee, ca. 1930-1932
2 11 Circus Programs and Reviews - Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey Combined Shows, 1919-1920
2 12 Circus Programs and Reviews - Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey Combined Shows, 1921-1923
2 13 Circus Programs and Reviews - Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey Combined Shows, 1924-1926
2 14 Circus Programs and Reviews - Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey Combined Shows, 1927-1931
2 15 Circus Programs and Reviews - Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey Combined Shows, 1932-1935
2 16 Circus Programs and Reviews - Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey Combined Shows, 1936-1937
2 17 Circus Programs and Reviews - Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey Combined Shows, 1938-1939
3 18 Circus Programs and Reviews - Russell Brothers, 1937-1939
3 19 Circus Programs and Reviews - Sells Floto, 1920-1923
3 20 Circus Programs and Reviews - Sells Floto, 1925-1932
3 21 Circus Programs and Reviews - Shrine, 1938-1939
3 22 Circus Programs and Reviews - Sir Robert Fossett's-Tower, ca.1930
3 23 Circus Publicity, miscellaneous, ca. 1891-1939
3 24 Circus Route Cards, ca.1923-1938
3 25 Circus Fans Association - Membership Rosters, 1926-1937
3 26 Circus Fans Association - Miscellaneous, ca.1926-1937
3 27 Circus Fans Association-Periodicals - White Tops, 1927-1929
3 28 Circus Fans Association - Periodicals - White Tops, 1930-1931
3 29 Circus Fans Association - Periodicals - White Tops, 1932-1934
4 30 Circus Fans Association - Periodicals - White Tops, 1934-1935
4 31 Circus Fans Association - Periodicals - White Tops, 1936-1937
4 32 Circus Fans Association - Periodicals - White Tops, 1938-1939
4 33 Theater Programs - A-B, ca.1923-1925
4 34 Theater Programs - C-D, 1919-1932
4 35 Theater Programs - E-O, 1925-1935
4 36 Theater Programs - P-Z, 1926-1939
4 37 Theater-Periodicals - Theatre Arts Monthly, 1931

Series 2: Visual Materials, 1895-1939, bulk 1920-1937

Visual materials include detailed pen and ink illustrations of circus performers from Pond's book titled, Big Top Rhythms, published in 1937. Photographs range in date from 1895-1939 and depict a variety of circus performers, companies and events.
Organized by type of material. Photographs arranged alphabetically.

Box Folder Contents
5 38 Illustrations - Drawings-Pencil, ca. 1937
5 39 Illustrations - Drawings- Pen & Ink, ca. 1937
5 40 Illustrations - Drawings-Pen & Ink, ca. 1937
5 41 Photographs - Adam Forepaugh Shows, Front Page Forepaugh Circus Handbook, 1899
5 42 Photographs - Adam Forepaugh Shows, Reproduction Souvenir Programs, 1891
5 43 Photographs - Adler, Felix B., "Funny Felix Klown" with Ringling Brothers & Barnum and Bailey Circus
5 44 Photographs - Alex Seiberts' Twenty-One Horse Tandem Act, 1895
5 45 Photographs - Barnes, Harold, 1937
5 46 Photographs - "Bertie" Tattooed by Red Gibbons, ca.1928?
5 47 Photographs - Big Top Rhythms Book Display, 1937
5 48 Photographs - Bignioli, Guiseppe
5 49 Photographs - The Bombayo Troupe, 1933-1935
5 50 Photograph s- "Buffalo Bill", William F. Cody, ca. 1912
5 51 Photographs - "Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show," 1912
5 52 Photographs - "Bonieto" Long Manned & Tailed Snow White Horse, 1895
5 53 Photographs - Cambell Brothers Circus, 1899
5 54 Photographs - The Calleano Family, 1930
5 55 Photographs - Carl, Miss Lone, ca. 1920
5 56 Photograph s- Century of Progress, 1932
5 57 Photographs - Circus Fans Association, 1931-1933
5 58 Photographs - Circus Train, A.L. Barnes Circus Train Wreck, 1930
5 59 Photographs - Circus Train, Mount Shasta California, ca. 1930's
5 60 Photographs - Circus Train, Omaha Flood, September 28, 1927
5 61 Photographs - The Clarkes, 1934-1937
5 62 Photographs - The Cliff Dwellers, 1936
5 63 Photographs - Clown Drawing by Ed Wheelan, 1937
5 64 Photographs - The Correstrelli Family, 1934-1936
5 65 Photographs - Darjarling, India Circus, 1931
5 66 Photographs - The Dekos Family, 1922
5 67 Photographs - Detroit Society of Arts and Crafts, "The Blue Rose," 1910
5 68 Photographs - Elephants in Winter Quarters, ca. 1930's
5 69 Photographs - The Flying Harolds, 1937
5 70 Photographs - The Hannefords, 1934-1937
5 71 Photographs - Harmon, George and Wife, 1933
5 72 Photographs - Haugen, R. Leonide
5 73 Photographs - Horvas Great Linden Circus, 1921
5 74 Photographs - The Italian Cristiani Troupe, 1935
5 75 Photographs - John Robinson's Circus, ca. 1920
5 76 Photographs - Knecht, Klara E. With "Tess" the Elephant, 1931
5 77 Photographs - Landolf, Bluch, ca. 1936
5 78 Photographs - Landolf, Bluch with unidentified woman, 1936
5 79 Photographs - Mademoiselle Fanella, ca. 1930's
5 80 Photographs - Mademoiselle Gabriel, The Living Half Woman, 1914-1915
5 81 Photographs - The Peerless Potters, 1935
5 82 Photographs - Performers, John L. (Jack) Davenport jr., John L. Davenport, Jack T.?, 1889
5 83 Photographs - Performers-unidentified, ca. 1925-1939
5 84 Photographs - Pond, Irving Kane with performers and Circus Fans Association members, ca. 1925-1939
5 85 Photographs - Powell, Al, Jr., 1922
5 86 Photographs - Robinson, Gil, ca.1900?
5 87 Photographs - Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey Circus Combined Shows, ca. 1930's
5 88 Photographs - Russell Brothers Circus, 1937
5 89 Photographs - Sells Floto Circus, 1915
5 90 Photographs - Sneed, Bill with "Babe" the Elephant
5 91 Photographs - The Three Del Rios, 1937
5 92 Photographs - Women's Baseball Teams-The Pirates and The Magpies, 1925
5 93 Telegram - From Clarke-Hanneford to Irving K. Pond, 1933

Series 3: Oversize Materials, 1891-1939, bulk 1920-1939

Items requiring extra large folders and boxes to accommodate their sizes.
Items arranged to mirror the arrangement of the collection: Publications (Box 6) followed by Visual materials (Box 7). Circus publicity includes pictorials and advertisements; photographs consist of group shots of the Circus Fans Association and the Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey circus.

Box Folder Contents
6 94 Circus Clippings and Articles, ca. 1922-1932
6 95 Circus Clippings and Articles, 1933
6 96 Circus Clippings and Articles, 1937
6 97 Circus Clippings and Articles, 1939
6 98 Circus Memorabilia, ca. 1930
6 99 Circus Programs and Reviews, ca.1893
6 100 Circus Publicity - miscellaneous, ca. 1891-1939
6 101 Theater Programs - Little Room, Captain Fry's Birthday Party, 1904
7 102 Photograph s- Circus Fans Association, April 22, 1927
7 103 Photographs - Circus Fans Association, ca. 1930
7 104 Photographs - Circus Fans Association, July 28-30, 1930
7 105 Photographs - Circus Fans Association, June 5, 1931
7 106 Photographs - Circus Fans Association, June 5, 1931
7 107 Photographs - Circus Fans Association, 1933
7 108 Photographs - Circus Fans Association, 1939
7 109 Photographs - Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey Combined Circus, July 31,1936