Rube Curtis,
Lincoln's
Clown


Lincoln Sentinel-Republican, 18 January 1962

Lure of Circus Was Real to one Lincoln
Resident, he was Clown for 50 Years

Rube Curtis of Lincoln, who spent many years as a clown following the sawdust trail with some of the largest circuses of the United States, but who is now retired, has a couple of letters in a recent issue of the Circus Review. The Review is a publication that carries a large amount of news concerning the Big Tops, the personnel operating them, as well as other outdoor amusement enterprises. In his letters, Curtis gives some of his experiences with the circuses. In one letter, Rube says that he started his circus work in 1907. Rube had a brother, Denny Curtis, who also was in circus work but who passed away in 1938, while playing a date for Rink Wright in Omaha, Neb. Rube says he played the Shrine Circus in Nashville for quite a few years, up until 1948.
In his second letter, Rube says he often meets some old friends who are in show business with which he had been in for the past half century. In 1907, Rube first went on the road with the Sells-Ploto circus. He says Rhoda Royal put his first makeup on. Since then he had dates all over the country. He doesn’t go on the road anymore – only at Christmas time, when he works toyland for Sears, Roebuck & Co. The Circus Review claims it is the only all-circus newspaper published in America.
Rube feels that there has not been much change in the operations of the circus, nor the interest of the public in this form of entertainment over the years, and he has no regrets for his particpation in the circus arena over the half century he spent with them. His only regret is that Father Time has crept up on him and he has had to give up his associations with the many fine people who make up the personnel of the circus crews.


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