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ANONYMOUS

Sells Brothers / Sole Proprietors

$1,400.00

ANONYMOUS

Sells Brothers / Sole Proprietors

$1,400.00

Year: ca. 1893

Size: 29 7/8 x 39 3/8 in

Condition: B/ Slight tears at folds and edges.

The family likeness is clear in this triple portrait of the Sells Brothers, one of the first big touring circuses in the U.S. In 1862, they created a circus. It failed. Then they worked in auctions, following circuses around to take advantage of the crowds to sell their merchandise. They were the Sells Brothers, after all. After taking an interest in Cannonball George Richards, one of the first Human Cannonball acts, they grew their traveling circus from 1872 to 1895, but faced increased competition from Adam Forepaugh and Barnum & Bailey. This poster, toward the end of their reign, attests that they are "sole proprietors" in a burst of family bootstraps pride; two years later, the Sells Brothers would merge with Forepaugh.