American Circus Stamp

US Postage Stamps: 1966

American Circus Stamp

The colorful American Circus stamp was issued on May 2, 1966 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the birth of John Ringling, one of the founders of the Ringling Brother’s Circus.

John Ringling and his brothers started their first circus, the Yankee Robinson and Ringling Brothers Circus, in 1884.  They soon renamed the circus to just the Ringling Brother’s Circus.  Originally the circus was a small traveling show, but within a decade it had grown into one of the largest traveling circuses in the county.  The circus continued to expand and in 1907 they bought the competing Barnum and Bailey Circus. Although the brothers owned both circuses, they toured separately under different names until 1919 when they were merged into a single show, the Ringling Brother’s and Barnum & Bailey Circus, billed as the “Greatest Show on Earth”.  The circus was extremely successful for a decade, but popularity declined when the Great Depression hit the country.  A tragic fire during a performance in 1944 killed over 100 people and further damaged the reputation and cash flow of the circus.  Popularity continued to decline as other forms of entertainment appeared and circuses fell out of favor.

The Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus still exists today and two touring trains bring different “Blue” and “Red” tours to cities across America.  The circus also visits smaller towns with the “Gold” tour, a smaller truck based circus.


US Postage Stamps

Migratory Bird Treaty
Humane Treatment of Animals
Indiana Statehood:
150th Anniversary
American Circus
Sixth International Philatelic Exhibition Stamp
Sixth International Philatelic Exhibition Souvenir Sheet
Bill of Rights:
175th Anniversary
Polish Millennium
Marine Corps Reserve:
50th Anniversary

Johnny Appleseed

National Parks:
50th Anniversary

General Federation of Woman's Clubs:
75th Anniversary

Plant for a More
Beautiful America

The Great River Road

US Savings Bonds /
Servicemen Appreciation

Mary Cassatt

Christmals 1966:
Madonna & Child