Category:
Clowns

Cho-Cho the Health Clown


Cho-Cho was a "health clown" who toured the USA during the 1920s, visiting classrooms, and trying to encourage kids to eat more vegetables, take baths, and brush their teeth. In a way, he was like the opposite of Ronald McDonald (Ronald being a clown who encourages children to eat junk food).

CHO stood for "Child Health Organization," which was the group that dreamed him up and sent him out. Some more info from the book Children’s Health Issues in Historical Perspective:

The clown Cho-Cho was trained to "teach health, sugar coated with all the nonsense and fun of the sawdust ring." The Health Fairy, a public health nurse, told "delightful stories," and a cartoonist drew "a white loaf of bread into a sour-faced boy,... a brown loaf into a round-faced smiling boy," and "vegetables weeping great tears because children do not eat them."

All three travelled to elementary and secondary schools, as well as exhibitions, fairs, and "any place where children were gathered together. A less traditional figure was CHO's pseudo-professor Happy (played by Clifford Goldsmith), who entertained child and adult audiences with snappy health maxims.

Happy, the Health Fairy, and the cartoonist worked well within the boundaries of CHO's program, but when the clown who played Cho-Cho began to regard himself "as a real authority on diet, hygiene, and even the morals of childhood," and deviated from his "carefully learned lines," the organization had to find a new Cho-Cho.


Popular Science Monthly - Feb 1920

Posted By: Alex - Thu Mar 22, 2018 - Comments (2)
Category: Clowns, Health, 1920s

Frontier Circus




In 1962, variations on the popular Western genre reached new and unlikely permutations.

Wikipedia entry here.

Posted By: Paul - Sat May 13, 2017 - Comments (3)
Category: Animals, Clowns, Fairs, Amusement Parks, and Resorts, Regionalism, Television, 1960s

When the Circus Comes to Town



I have no idea of the provenance of this half-hour compilation. Shown at cinemas before the main feature? Whatever the case, it has everything. Cornball music, girly cheesecake, animated cartoon, stop-motion cartoon, narration by a chimp. Also, the highly disturbing image reproduced below. Somehow I feel it relates to the "horse fondling" theme of yesterday.

image

Posted By: Paul - Wed Sep 16, 2015 - Comments (6)
Category: Animals, Clowns, Dreams and Nightmares, Music, Sex Symbols, Cartoons, Stop-motion Animation, 1940s

Buck Nolan - The tallest clown

Buck Nolan claimed to be the tallest clown in the world. And since he was 7 feet 6 inches tall, that claim was probably accurate.

He reportedly turned down the role of Darth Vader, after which he was probably a sad, bitter clown. Plus, he was also once investigated for child molestation, so he was also a creepy clown. (Though I don't know if he was actually found guilty of the charges.)

More info and pictures of him at thetallestman.com.

Posted By: Alex - Sun Jul 06, 2014 - Comments (4)
Category: Clowns

Zovello, The Bonomo Magic Clown



Given fezzes to wear, and a supply of taffy to eat, the children in the audience were still at a loss for having to watch the sub-Krusty antics of Zovello the Magic Clown.

Posted By: Paul - Thu Feb 20, 2014 - Comments (6)
Category: Clowns, Television, Children, 1940s, 1950s

Professor Turned Clown

imageimage

Discontented with the life of a professor of economics, Dr. Charles Boas became Onions the Clown.

I'm sure this thrilled any living parents who might have helped pay for years of higher education.

Read the whole story here.

Posted By: Paul - Wed Feb 05, 2014 - Comments (7)
Category: Clowns, Eccentrics, 1960s, Universities, Colleges, Private Schools and Academia

Clown Art


If you're a collector of paintings of clowns, then you're probably already aware of Jim Howle. His website describes him as "the best-known clown artist in the world." He's actually the only clown artist that I know of, though I'm sure there must be others.

Posted By: Alex - Fri Jun 14, 2013 - Comments (8)
Category: Art, Clowns

The Six Brown Brothers



image

Blackface, clownsuits and saxophones: a winning combo in any era!

Learn the whole story here.

Posted By: Paul - Sun May 05, 2013 - Comments (0)
Category: Clowns, Music, Stereotypes and Cliches, 1910s, 1920s, 1930s

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Alex Boese
Alex is the creator and curator of the Museum of Hoaxes. He's also the author of various weird, non-fiction books such as Elephants on Acid.

Paul Di Filippo
Paul has been paid to put weird ideas into fictional form for over thirty years, in his career as a noted science fiction writer. He has recently begun blogging on many curious topics with three fellow writers at The Inferior 4+1.

Our banner was drawn by the legendary underground cartoonist Rick Altergott.

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