Extraordinary Vintage Photos of The American Circus by Frederick W. Glasier

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Queen, the High Diving Horse, Brockton Fair, Massachusetts, circa 1899 via

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Joan of Arc, circa 1912 via

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Ella Bradna, Equestrian, circa 1903 via

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Loie Fuller, Glorine, Butterfly Dancer, 1902 via

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Charmion, Strong Woman, 1904 via

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Nettie Carrol, circa 1904 via

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Annette Kellerman, circa 1907 via

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Gertrude Dewar, Mademoiselle Omega, Brockton Fair, Massachusetts, 1908 via

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Mademoiselle Scheel with Lions, circa 1905 via

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Living Statues, circa 1905 via

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The Circus Girls (1949) by Nina Leen

Nina Leen (d. 1995) was a Russian-born American photographer and a constant contributor to Life. A self-taught photographer she never became a staff photographer, but she contributed as a contract photographer until the magazine closed in 1972.

In 1949 she shot the sassy subculture of circus girls in Sarasota, Florida, dubbed “the home of the American circus” for the magazine.

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By Nina Leen (1949)

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lomography.com

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by Nina Leen (1949)

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by Nina Leen (1949)

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by Nina Leen (1949)

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by Nina Leen (1949)

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Victorian/Edwardian Circus Acts

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Circus Performer Zelda Boden (1910s)

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Circus cyclists (c. 1891)

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“Trick Rider”. Usually they would ride in circles doing various tricks on the ponies.

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Circus Girl with horse (1908)

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CIRCUS HARLEQUIN Performer (c. 1910)

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Sanger’s Circus carriage, late 19th century Great Britain.

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vam.ac.uk