Page:Sawdust & Spangles.djvu/276

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SAWDUST AND SPANGLES

farmer we stopped and called loudly. When the king of the soil appeared we would hand him the bill and allow him to read it; then we would take the bill and ride on to the next house. It was tedious work, but we succeeded in drawing our crowd and felt repaid for our efforts.

THE CIRCUS "CRIER"

It is doubtful if there was to be found a more interesting character than the circus crier in the days of the wagon shows. He was often a man of ability—many men who were circus criers have attained substantial success in the world of affairs. They were chosen for this position largely on account of their good "talking" qualities, and were, as a rule, resourceful and given to witty jests. The show once had a "Little Man" whom they exhibited as Tom Thumb. He was in reality a boy of about eleven years of age. But he was fitted out with a little carriage and ponies, and filled the bill very well. When the crier took his stand in front of the tent he would call out:

"Ladies and gentlemen; we have little Tom Thumb inside. More than this, we have the carriage which was presented to him by her Majesty, Queen Victoria of England. Ladies