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Encyclopedia Dubuque


"Encyclopedia Dubuque is the online authority for all things Dubuque, written by the people who know the city best.”
Marshall Cohen—researcher and producer, CNN

Affiliated with the Local History Network of the State Historical Society of Iowa, and the Iowa Museum Association.


From Encyclopedia Dubuque
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Source: Wikipedia

RINGLING BROTHERS AND BARNUM AND BAILEY. The combined show came to Dubuque in 1930. (1) It was advertised then as having five-rings of entertainment and a "tribe of genuine Ubangi savages." Its appearance was threatened in July when it was announced the circus could not appear at the AIRPORT. The use of the airport, by anything other than airplanes, was forbidden by the U. S. Department of Commerce. (2)

In 1937 Ringling Brothers, Barnum and Bailey had three circus winter headquarters that were active farms in the summer: 2,500 acres in Saratosa, Florida; 2,200 acres in Peru, Indiana; and 1,800 acres in Baldwin Park, California. (3) The circus came to Dubuque again on August 31, 1937. When the show came to town on September 3, 1952 two members of the DUBUQUE BOYS' CLUB attended free for constructing two hundred rat traps for the Jaycees. (4) On September 15, 1954 the circus performed near MELODY MILL. (5)



1. "Circus Can't Show at Local Airport," Telegraph-Herald and Times-Journal, July 22, 1930, p. 21

2. "Five-Ring Circus Coming on August 15th," Telegraph-Herald and Times-Journal, August 3, 1930, p. 12

3. "What It Takes to Manage 'Greatest Show on Earth," Telegraph-Herald, August 29, 1937, p. 16

4. "Free Tickets for the Circus," The Telegraph-Herald, August 19, 1952, p. 2

5. "Ringling to Bring Large Herd of Elephants Here on September 15," Telegraph Herald, September 8, 1954, p. 3