Page:Sawdust & Spangles.djvu/250

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Nothing can afford a better idea of the variety and picturesqueness of a showman’s life than the medley of odd incidents, of strange experiences and homely happenings that crowd the thought of a veteran when in a reminiscent mood. It is under this kind of inspiration that I have jotted down, in this scrappy and haphazard way, the episodes which sufficiently impressed me at the time of their occurrence to claim frequent rehearsal when talking over the "old days" with other pioneers of the tent and the ring. It is the clowns who in one way or another furnish most material for anecdotes, and the greatest clown America ever saw was Dan Rice, who at one time was the most famous circus performer in America, and, with the exception of John Robinson, the most daring. I have never met a more nervy man; he was without an equal in trying emergencies. He would face a mob at any time