Project Description

Gollmar Bros. Three Mirror Tableau

(1) This first photo shows the 3 diamond mirror tableau on Gollmar Bros. Greatest of American Shows about 1910. This wagon was a Gollmar original and was probably built by Moeller Bros. for the show about 1903. It was used on the Gollmar show through the 1916 season and in 1917 was on the James Patterson-Gollmar Bros. Combined Circus.

(1913 – Three Diamond Mirror Tableau Wagon, Gollmar Bros. Circus – Conover Set # 296, photo # 53 – Kenneth Whipple Collection)

In 1919 this wagon was sold by James Patterson to the Al G. Barnes Circus, along with some equipment and the hippo, “Lotus.” The wagon was then used as a tableau wagon on the Barnes show for a number of years and I assume was used on through the 1924 season, which was the final one for parades on that show. In 1928 it was sold to the Studio Rental Service and some years later acquired by Jimmie Woods, who moved it to his place in Venice, Calif. Many fans saw it while at the Woods lot prior to 1951.

(1951 – Joseph Bradbury Album # 15, photo # 36E – at Jimmy Woods compound in Venice, CA)

In 1951 when Woods closed out his lot the wagon was moved with several other old Barnes wagons over to Jimmy Condon’s junk yard nearby. A year later those wagons that could be salvaged were done so and were acquired by the Venice Chamber of Commerce. However the old 3 diamond mirror tableau was in such foul shape that it was destroyed.

(1) Excerpts from the Circus Wagon Files, Bandwagon, Vol. 3, No. 6 (Nov-Dec), 1959, pp. 13-14

By Joseph Bradbury