Olive Tree Genealogy is continuing a new Alphabet Genealogy series of blog posts. I'm not following the usual way of going A-Z surnames. Instead I will create a one word "tag". Then I will share an ancestor (mine, my husband's, an inlaw's or one of my children's) who fits the tag.
Today's letter is C and the tag is Circus Performer.
Albert George Marriott and his twin brother were my 3rd cousins, twice
removed. Both were born in Guelph Ontario in June 1882. The winning of a
baton contest in the old Guelph skating rink gave the Marriott twins
their start for 60 years in show business. They started off in Downie
Brothers Circus as jugglers on bicycles but in later years developed an
arial act, and gained international fame.
DOWNIE'S CIRCUS made several successful visits around the turn of the
century. For a one-ring show hauled overland by wagons, Downie achieved
maximum results from 50 performers and a profusion of animals
1896 the twins joined the Harry Lindley Dramatic Company, playing in
Canada up to Dawson City in the Yukon. Engagements with other companies
included the Andrew Downie Company of Vancouver.
was with the Downie circus that the Marriotts orignated their bicycle
juggling act which they repeated at the opening of Tony Pastor's Theatre
in New York.
"We played with the Orrin Circus in Mexico for
three years then going to the Million Dollar Theatre in Buenos Aires,
Argentina for six months." [letter from Al Marriott] ..."My
research found Albert and his wife Maud as passengers on board the SS
Verdi from Buenos Aires to New York. They are listed as "theatrical
"Next came several months at theatres in Havana Cuba.
On five occasions we played return engagements in front of the
grandstand at Toronto Exhibition and making appearances before the
Prince of Wales" [letter from Al Marriott] Using Ancestry, I
found Albert and his twin brother (whose name is uncertain, in various
records it appears as Menard, Murray and Manet) sailing back to New York
from Havana Cuba in 1907.
Marriott Twins were booked for a
world tour and played the large cities of Europe and other continents.
Following this was a booking to represent the USA at th ePan-Pacific
Peace Exposition at Nagoya Japan for six months. Albert and Maud's
names appear on the passenger list of the Kongo Maru sailing from
Nagoya to New York
the engagements was one with President Truman at a county fair in
Missouri and the following week at Washington DC. There followed
references in Al Marriott's letter to numerous other engagements
including seven years at the Hippodrome in New York.
years with the coming of the aeroplane their act took the form of a
large plane mounted on a high tower. The players performed on a trapeze
hanging from the plane, as well as being fastened to the propeller. The
home of Mr. and Mrs. Al Marriott is now Georgia [Guelph Mercury Sept 21,
1939: The Marriott Twins Scored World Fame]