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History of Circus in Puerto Rico: Reseaching a circus performer in Arecibo, Puerto Rico. I have had no luck finding information on circuses during the early to mid 1900s in Puerto Rico. Would anyone have information or know where I could find information on circuses in Puerto Rico during this time period. Did any of the “bigger” circuses travel to Puerto Rico and recruit? I can be reached at cramirez@pbwt.com. My name is Carol. I welcome any suggestions.

Thank you for your time.

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Greetings from Botswana, In about 1974 (spring, if I remember correct) I traveled to Puerto Rico with Eloise Berchtold to help with her mixed cage act working on Gran Circo Panamericano. I rode in the plane with the cats and bears to try and keep them calm and ended up feeding lots of jam to a bear named Tanja. The pilots also let me ride in the cockpit which was a major thrill for me. After several months of stadium dates all over the Island we were left stranded on the tarmac at the airport for several uncomfortable days alongside the cages. During one of our performances, I was approached by a Yugoslavian animal trainer named Josip Marcan who was visiting Eloise. He was based at Safari Park in Bayamon, near San Juan. He wanted me to come and work for him with lions, tigers and elephants. My first commitment was to Eloise and her animals, but I agreed to return to Puerto Rico and work there after seeing Eloise safely back to her winter quarters in Washington state. In early 1975 (?) I hitch hiked from Portland to Miami and flew to Puerto Rico to work with Josip and his wife Carol. Eventually there was some difficulty with his agreement with the park and he took the animals that belonged to him (14 lions and a couple of tigers) and started a little open-air circus, Gran Circo Borinkin, or something like that. I think that it is a name that refers to the Island. He brought in a clown from Mexico and a family of performers from Columbia. His act with the 14 lions was the highlight of the show. I only stayed with him for a couple of months after that as conditions were rough, butchering ponys late at night to feed the lions, and I was looking for something with a future.

Douglas Groves

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My family had a circus in Puerto Rico. This person was looking for information about a circus in Puerto Rico during the 1970’s. A person that reply to her had mentioned that Hermanos Marco Circo. I am one of the grandaughters of Hiram Marco who was the leading person in the circus along with his brothers and other family members.

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My dear friend, For a brief period during this time, I had the one and only circus in Puerto Rico. I am very bad at dates, but maybe this will help. There were about 3 small circuses in Puerto Rico. The largest and most famous, Hermanos Marcos, they lived in Mayaguez and toured the island for many years with a white horse named Palomo. They were brothers, Hiram was the guiding force. One brother was Cesar and I can’t remember the others. Hiram was a wonderful comedian and trumpet player. The other two circuses were tiny and I can’t give you anymore info on them. I came to Puerto Rico with my small circus and spent 3 years there, this was about 1972? Before I arrived there was a large circus named Circo Romano, I believe from Brazil that suddenly left the entire troupe abandoned including the animals, for a long time an Animal Park called Safari Park had all the equipment and animals. I bought two lions from them. Later a circus named Continental from I believe Colombia arrived under a canvas 4-pole tent with a great show starring Kimba who worked lions without an arena.they only setup in the San Juan area. During and before this Jimmy Harrington had his large circus every year in either a building or ballpark. Called Circo Panamericano. Then came Circus Odyessy. That’s all I can tell you and I hope in someway it may add to your journey of inquest.

Kindest regards, Bruno Loyale, The Magic Circus of Samoa

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I was looking for information on my great grandfather’s circus and I bumped into your email. My greatgrandfather was in the “Lowandes circus” in the early 1900’s. I have his diaries and just started to look more into this, he has a small map were he marked all the visit to Puerto Rico and other islands. This is were he meet my greatgrandmother. His name was Eduardo Dilme and he was a contortionist, he would wear a frog head. I also have some pictures of him and the circus. Let me know if you need anything else or now more. I am reading his diaries and also talking to my grandmother, his daughter. Let me know if you are still interested in more info.

Gilda Dare

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