Page:Sawdust & Spangles.djvu/159

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129
PARADES AND BAND WAGONS

would that day be attached for debt, he ordered the parade to start early, as he intended to give them a "long ride." The procession accordingly started on what has passed into circus history as the "silent parade," for, leaving the city in all the glory of spangle and tinsel, the showmen never rested until they had reached the State line, while the sheriffs, waiting at the tents in Albany for the parade to return, had the poor satisfaction of attaching the almost worn-out and quite worthless canvas.

I have often been asked what it costs to start a circus and menagerie. This is a most difficult question to answer, since it depends entirely upon the size and pretensions of the enterprise in question. Shows vary in size from cheap affairs, capable of being carried in three railroad cars, to the elaborate institutions which require two long special trains for their transportation. The expense of running a large show is enormous, although in advertising this expense is usually exaggerated. There are a great many traveling tented exhibitions which "bill," or advertise, like a circus, and in the eyes of the general public pass for circuses, but which, in reality, are variety exhibitions given under canvas.