Michael Lancaster (Author), Barbara Harnack (Illustrator),

Publisher: Ballyhoo; 1ST edition (2013)
ISBN-10: 0578123061   ISBN-13: 978-0578123066


Life can seem like a three-ring circus. No one knew this more profoundly than five brothers from Baraboo, Wisconsin.

In 1884, Albert, August, Otto, Alfred, Charles, John, and Henry Ringling performed short skits and juggling routines in town halls in Baraboo in a show called The One Penny Circus. The boys brought a real tent and expanded their show, giving performances in many small towns. The Ringling Brothers World’s Greatest Show grew into The Ringling Brothers Classic and Comic Concert Company. Twenty-three years later in 1907, they acquired the Barnum & Bailey Circus and operated both as separate circuses until merging the two in 1919 into what became ballyhooed as “The Greatest Show on Earth” and the background of an important 1952 Cecil B. DeMille movie starring Charleton Heston and James Stewart. The Ringling Brothers Barnum and Bailey Circus still tours the world today.

Children of all ages love going to the circus, and none are more entranced than pre-school children. Of course, they are always dazzled by the performers, but parents sometimes wish the children understood the Ringling Brothers’ back story so they could fully appreciate how the circus evolved. To enable children to understand circus roots, Michael Lancaster—the great-grandson of Charles Ringling—has written The Boys from Baraboo, a uniquely illustrated children’s book that unfolds the Ringling Brothers’ story in classic style. With Barbara Harnack’s twenty-six illustrations, children will be enthralled by the story of the five Ringling brothers and how their circus came about. Told in twenty-eight pages, their tale will mesmerize small children and teach them the roots of what has become show business’ most enduring spectacle.    

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