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Clyde Beatty-Cole Bros. Circus poster
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Object ID 001873

Object Name Clyde Beatty-Cole Bros. Circus poster

Object Desc Print advertisement for Clyde Beatty-Cole Bros Circus. Main image is a hippo with its mouth open.

Collection General Collection

Accession # CMY002041

Alternate ID

General Category History

Category Advertising/Promo


Source Category Found In Collection

Accession Date JAN 1,1991


Location Room 7, Shelf 9

Object Date 1960s

Start Year Range

End Year Range

Status On-Site Collection Storage

Object Keywords circuses,advertising,signs,posters,Clyde Beatty-Cole Bros. Circus,Cole Bros. Circus,Big Otto,

Title Clyde Beatty-Cole Bros. Circus poster

Description Color print advertisement for Clyde Betty-Cole Bros Circus. Along top is text with event information for Tampa, FL in red and blue ink. Large rectanglular shape at bottom with green border. Yellow background. Text in red lettering at top "Clyde / Beatty-Cole / Bros. / Combined / Circus". Below is a large image of a hippo's head with its mouth open and teeth showing. At lower right corner is text "Big Otto". At right edge near center there is a stamp for Beatty-Cole Circus. Back of sign is brown, with marking from paint and ink. Plastic covering with holes in corners at an top and bottom edges at center.


Approx Collection Date

Height 22

Length 0

Width 14

Depth 0

Diameter 0

Circumference 0

Weight 0

Unit of Measure Inches/ounces

Dimension Details

Quantity 0



Site Details

Place of Origin

Maker Clyde Beatty-Cole Bros. Circus

Maker Details See Notes.

Maker Mark


(click for full image)

Image Caption CMY2041



Date APR 1,2014

Summary fair

Assessor BN

Notes Plastic covering is not original or archival. Holes in corners from display. Paper is discolored. At top text and ink is faded. About 5" from top edge there are creases at left and right sides and a two crease lines running horizontally across.. At lower left corner there is a brown stain. Yellow accretions along left edge from tape. Holes and scratches in plastic sheeting. On back, masking tape is adhered to paper. There is ink at top which is mirror to front text, and also blue and yellow ink splatter on lower portion. Looks as if the sign was placed on top of another sign during manufacturer.


Date APR 17,2014

Summary Location change

Notes Location changed to Room 7, Shelf 9 from Room 7, Shelf 2 - automatic entry by admin



Date APR 1,2014

Notes In 1870, William Cole started the W.W. Cole Circus. When he died in 1915, his estate was valued at $5 million, making him the first circus millionaire. In 1906, Martin Downs purchased the circus and changed the name to Cole Bros. Circus. It continued to increase in success and by 1935 it had 35 rail cars. Clyde Beatty started as a cage boy, and in 1935 worked with the Cole Bros. Circus. In 1943, Beatty worked with the Clyde Beatty-Russell Bros. Circus. In 1945, he purchased the Wallace Bros. Circus, a truck show, and opened the Clyde Beatty Circus. This became a rail show, but folded in 1956. In 1957, after it was purchased by Acme Circus Operating Corporation it joined with Cole Bros., which was also owned by Acme. Beatty died in 1965, and by the 1970s, the name was taken off. Today the Cole Bros. Circus still runs in Florida.