Ching-Ling-He & Tia Pen - Tuesday, March 17, 2015

The American Treasure Tour blog has spent the last few days talking about some of the beautiful circus posters hanging in the Toy Box.  We have more, don't worry.  We have discussed the magic (and occasional controversy) of the Barnum & Bailey Circus before, and we are happy to do so again today.  

In 1914, Barnum & Bailey brought a new element to their circus that would prove quite exotic and new for many Americans:  two Chinese circus acts.  The Ching-Ling-He and Tia Pen troupes specialized in performances including hair hangs, bowl spinning and balancing acts - feats that still inspire awe today, but that must have simply blown audiences away a hundred years ago.  Five years after the time this poster was made, the Barnum & Bailey would be bought out by an outfit called the Ringling Brothers Circus, effectively creating the single-most famous circus in the world.
QUESTION:  Hair can be very strong, but how strong?  How much weight can one strand of hair potentially hold?
A)  10 grams
B)  100 grams
C)  1,000 grams
D)  10,000 grams
ANSWER BELOW

LAND!!!!!  Today marks the anniversary of one of the biggest land acquisitions made by Americans before the Revolution.  The year was 1755, and the company was the Transylvania Land Company (no, not the Transylvania of Dracula fame).  The seller was the Cherokee Nation.  For $50,000, they sold what would eventually become the entire state of Kentucky to the English colonists.  Crazy.

THE DUFFSTER.  It wouldn't be right to get through March 17th without celebrating the birth in 1949 of future man from Atlantis and Dallas star Patrick Duffy.  With over four decades' worth of film and television work behind him, the Duffster's (our nickname, not his) legacy is secure.  Happy birthday, Bobby Ewing!

QUOTE:  Dancers are a work of art.  They are the canvas on which their work is painted. - Patrick Duffy

ANSWER:  B)  100 grams.  A full head of hair could potentially hold well over 12,000 pounds without tearing; however, please don't just go home and try this.  It will hurt.  We recommend that you get proper training in hair hanging, maybe by a special Chinese troupe.