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Melvin C. Miller Jr. Circus Photographs

 Collection — Box: 1
Identifier: A0045

Scope and Contents

The collection is a dissembled scrapbook consisting of twenty-three pages of photographs of multiple circuses, in multiple locations throughout the United States. The cover of the scrapbook is inscribed, "This book is owned by Melvin C. Miller Jr." and Miller himself provided captions for many of the photographs throughout the remaining pages. Photographs are of people, animals, and circus structures including train cars, carriages, big tops, and signage.

The majority of the photographs depict the Ringling Bros.-Barnum and Bailey circus through the 1941-1943 seasons. Other circuses depicted include the 101 Ranch Wild West Show (1925), which was at the Miller Brothers 101 Ranch in Oklahoma; the Hagenbeck-Wallace circus (1934); the Robbins Bros. circus (1938); the Cole Bros. cirus (1936); and perhaps others, not named.

Dates

  • 1925 - 1943

Creator

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open for research. Access to sensitive materials may be restricted at the discretion of the American Folk Art Museum.

Conditions Governing Use

The Melvin C. Miller Jr. Circus Photographs are owned by the American Folk Art Museum. The collection is subject to all copyright laws, and is dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship.

Biographical Note

Melvin C. Miller Jr. was a performer in the Ringling Bros.-Barnum and Bailey circus in the early 1940s.

It is unclear if he was also related to the Millers of the Miller Brothers' 101 Ranch in Oklahoma. The 101 Ranch was sold in 1931, after two of the three Miller brothers had passed away, and the ranch was suffering from both poor financial decisions and the ramifications of the depression. The earliest photograph in the collection, dated 1925, depicts the 101 Ranch Wild West Show, and is of a different size and tone than the other photographs. It is possible that Melvin C. Miller Jr. was in posession of it as part of his family's memorabilia, but it is unknown.

Extent

1 linear feet (1 container)

Language of Materials

English

Overview

The collection is a dissembled scrapbook consisting of twenty-three pages of photographs of multiple circuses, the majority being Ringling Bros.-Barnum and Bailey, in multiple locations throughout the United States.
Title
A Guide to the Melvin C. Miller Jr. Circus Photographs
Author
Mimi Lester
Date
March 2017
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Undetermined
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note
English

Repository Details

Part of the American Folk Art Museum Archives Repository

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