Vintage Photograph Shows Circus Elephants Making an Annual Visit to Bellevue Hospital in 1946

May 2, 1946: On its annual visit to Bellevue Hospital in Manhattan, the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus drew record-breaking crowds — a “throng of 6,000, including outgoing patients, and more than a generous sprinkling of neighborhood youngsters” The Times reported. “For many, it was their first circus,” The Times explained, “such as tiny Oscar Turner, 5, wrapped in a pink bathrobe several sizes too large, who gave his nurse a most busy time. Oscar kept up a frequent charge to the red arena. He dared the elephants, he challenged the clowns, he laughed and pranced. ‘Great medicine,’ said Pat Valdo, the Big Show’s Ringmaster.”
May 2, 1946: On its annual visit to Bellevue Hospital in Manhattan, the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus drew record-breaking crowds — a “throng of 6,000, including outgoing patients, and more than a generous sprinkling of neighborhood youngsters” The Times reported. “For many, it was their first circus,” The Times explained, “such as tiny Oscar Turner, 5, wrapped in a pink bathrobe several sizes too large, who gave his nurse a most busy time. Oscar kept up a frequent charge to the red arena. He dared the elephants, he challenged the clowns, he laughed and pranced. ‘Great medicine,’ said Pat Valdo, the Big Show’s Ringmaster.”

The Lively Morgue is a daily photo blog from the New York Times in which an original photo from the newspaper's archives is reposted along with tidbits of information gleamed from the historical article it accompanied. Along with a rescan of the original photograph, the backs of each photo are also scanned, giving a behind-the-scenes look at the editorial process of one of the world's best newspapers.

This recent post shows elephants from the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus visiting Bellevue Hospital in 1946 for an annual visit.

May 2, 1946: On its annual visit to Bellevue Hospital in Manhattan, the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus drew record-breaking crowds — a “throng of 6,000, including outgoing patients, and more than a generous sprinkling of neighborhood youngsters” The Times reported. “For many, it was their first circus,” The Times explained, “such as tiny Oscar Turner, 5, wrapped in a pink bathrobe several sizes too large, who gave his nurse a most busy time. Oscar kept up a frequent charge to the red arena. He dared the elephants, he challenged the clowns, he laughed and pranced. ‘Great medicine,’ said Pat Valdo, the Big Show’s Ringmaster.”

The original article from 1946 has more.

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