Saturday, April 17, 2010

The Tom Mix Circus

What have I been doing for the past month??? I have to feed my Old Paper habit by continuing to produce First Day Covers, and also I've been asked to design two First Day Cancels for the Postal Service within the past month as well. The cancel are a lot of fun, and I will post the one I produced for the Montana Flag stamp (which came out yesterday) for next week's Postcard Friendly Friday. But just so you know...

The USPS released its Cowboys of the Silver Screen issue on Saturday, and I deliberately avoided the more common themes for the art work. Not only that, but I also purchased and canceled the stamps in the little berg of Ringling, Montana, named for one of the Ringling Brothers who at one time not only had a rail spur built to accommodate the railroad cars for his traveling circus, but also he heavily invested in the cattle market and owned a great deal of property surrounding the town.

Tom Mix made numerous movies, but documenting them all is a difficult task at best, since most of them have long since deteriorated to the point that they are not viewable.

His Circus involvement is easily documented, and he worked for not only some rather large Wild West shows, but circus and rodeo performances were also a big thing with Tom. He had a Wild West show as early as 1909, but he did not have his own circus until 1935, when he purchased the Sam Dill Circus and renamed it. He employed 150, and kept 75 trucks on the road for 3 years.

After posting on Saturday, I received a nice email from a lady by the name of Marianne Dow. I don't know what she doesn't collect, but I know both of the images, the one of what appears to be a comic book cover and the other a board game, come from her personal collection.

This one was pure fun!


  1. Beautiful! Now I need to get to the post office to buy some stamps!

    My dad actually remembers going to the Tom Mix Circus as a kid. It was a huge deal for the little country boy to see one of his heros.

  2. I used to enjoy Tom Mix. I don't remember much about his circus. I like your work very much. And I think working for the postal service is a kind of dream come true. I also just read about the postal service about to go under.

  3. I just stumbled across your blog and I am thrilled to be here. You are very talented. I grew up in Philispburg (going home for my 20th reunion this summer). I now live in Washington and it doesn't seem like I get home enough.

    Congratulations on getting the First Cancels, how exciting!