Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Rebuilding the Ringling Bell Wagon

The Ringling Bros. Bell Wagon was residing at the Ringling Museums until a legal battle ensued as to what the Ringling Museums actually owned vs. what was on loan. ( Someone please correct me if this isn't correct )

Anyway, around 1985, several wagons left the Florida climate to come to Baraboo to be placed on loan at the Circus World Museum. Since the Parade had just been restored in Milwaukee again, Marv Gauger and his team undertook the huge task of making the grande olde dame, parade ready again.

The entire photo set for this event was in the Marv Gauger photo albums that Mr. Steve Flint has and who has so graciously allowed me to share with one and all. Enjoy!


Anonymous said...

Hi Bob,
Thanks for sharing. If I remember correctly, the story was that the show had originally loaned the wagons to the Ringling Museum in the early '50s (remember they used these wagons on the show through the late '40s and the Bell Wagon at least through the '51 season) and wanted to reclaim them. The matter being ultimately resolved by dividing the wagons between the show and museum. I understand that it was Chappie who suggested that one party pick a wagon then the other and so on. The show received first choice and took the Bell Wagon. The museum received the second choice and picked 5 Graces and so on. At least that's I remember hearing at the time. Rick Faber

Down the Road by Jim said...

I wonder what the cost of replacing those bells would be today -- if you could find someone to do that --- probably just sell you a electronic gizmo , like we have in our church bell tower , to play recordings of bells! More recorded music on the circus !