Circus: Adam Forepaugh Circus, 1867-1894

The Adam Forepaugh Circus, founded by Adam Forepaugh, was a major competitor of P.T. Barnum and Ringling Bros. Recognized for innovation in a highly competitive industry, the Forepaugh Circus initiated a dual roundtop system, dividing the menagerie from the circus performance. Thousands of audience members convened under a half-mile round tent to see spectacles like “The Light of Asia” (a “white” elephant), “Battles of the War for Freedom,” and “ ‘Jack’ the Only Boxing Kangaroo.” While independently successful for twenty-seven years, audiences grew wary of his shows, where grifting, short-changing and pickpockets ran rife. Forepaugh’s unscrupulous business practices created a market niche for “Sunday School Shows” like Ringling Bros. and P.T. Barnum, shows that would eventually outshine and outlast the Forepaugh Circus.

Alternative Names:
Forepaugh's Circus
Great Forepaugh Show
Adam Forepaugh Circus, Adam Forepaugh Sr., Proprietor
Forepaugh & The Wild West
Circus Type
Right Related People
Right Related Circuses
Right Itineraries
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