Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Flatcar # 53

The History of Flatcar # 53

This flatcar is a 72 ft. Warren design flat. It was purchased from World of Mirth Shows on September 21, 1964 by the Joseph Schlitz Brewing Co. While on the World of Mirth Shows it was numbered # 57.
The actual origin of the car is only speculation. Built by the Warren Tank Car Co. sometime between 1928 and 1937, it has been documented that the Bernardi Greater Shows later changed the name to World of Mirth. Bernardi Greater Shows bought new 72’ Warrens in 1926/1927. World of Mirth then ordered five new 72’ Warrens in 1936. The Jess Adkins and Zack Terrell owned Cole Bros. Circus ordered six new Warrens in 1937. They also bought three from the Sam Gumpertz era of the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus. Other shows that were known to have sold the train cars that eventully ended up on Cole Bros. Circus included S.W. Brundage Shows, Dodson Shows, and 101 Ranch which had their cars come from the defunct King Bros., Gentry Bros. and 1929 Cole Bros. World Toured Circus.
Upon it’s acquisition for the Circus Train, the car was refurbished and repainted Silver with Red letters and a White Outline. It was titled Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Combined Circus and lettered the same on both sides.
In 1990, the car was repainted with a Silver base and an orange body inside the outer steel frame of the Gunwales with Silver lettering and a Blue Outline titled W.W. Cole’s Great New York & New Orleans Zoological Exposition. This paint scheme remained as such through 1996.
The car was then repainted again in 1997. It was a Chrome Aluminum car with Bright Red letters and a Emerald green shadow titled Cole Bros. Circus with Clyde Beatty & Ken Maynard. This paint scheme remained through the last Milwaukee parade in 2003.
It is stored outside the Train sheds of the Circus World Museum on a side track as of Sept. 2007.

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