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As I search for photos of Sylvia, I’ve come to be in awe of the Circus Community and all the fantastic web sites! I’m looking for photos of Sylvia Moravec Reckliess. As the Reckless Duo, she performed with her husband and his brother as a head balancing/trapeze act for Ringling and vaudeville from c.1917-1925 as Sylvia Mora and CO / Reckless Duo. She appeared with her husband (Frank) and daughter into the mid 1930’s. I have some somewhat grainy Billboard, Variety, Clipper and newspaper photos and one nice postcard ad from a Moravec Family descendant at Ancestry.com. They knew she was with the Circus but not the vaudeville connection. She was born in Chicago in 1893. I am trying to “prove” that she co-starred with Stan Laurel in his 1922 short comedy “The Egg” as “DRIN MORO”. The Ancestry family has no knowledge of this, either way. Better photos might help compensate for the heavy makeup used in films for a positive ID. I have about an 80% confidence level that Drin and Sylvia are one and the same. Her husband and his brother Fred and sister Gertrude immigrated from Germany thru Cuba about 1914. The 3 played as the Reckless Trio for Ringling and about 1917, Trudie went with the Arleys. I think she married one of them. I will also check with the Baraboo Circus Museum. Any search suggestions you have will be appreciated. She appears at 4:30 in this youtube clip. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3boi-KSanJo.

Jarvis – Chicago

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The Pete Mardo photographs of RBBB provide some photographic coverage of early 1920s acts. You can peruse them at the CWM library in Baraboo. Bookings as Hollywood film doubles were sometimes reported in New York Clipper and Billboard. Clipper is online at Illinois Digital Newspaper Collections; Billboard is only at ProQuest’s paid site for your time frame, though take a look on Fulton History’s website – it might reach 1922. The Sons of the Desert seem to know just about everything about Laurel & Hardy; if you haven’t accessed that membership, it may be worth an attempt. You might also try perusing magazines that catered to the film trade; perhaps some published comprehensive cast lists, including stunt doubles.

Fred Dahlinger Jr., Curator of Circus History, John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art, Sarasota, FL

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