FIVE FUN FACTS about why the Presidency has always been a Three Ring Circus!

Did you know that the American Presidency and The Greatest Show On Earth® have a shared history that goes back to the 1700's? In Celebration of our Chief Executives and their circus connection, here are five little-known fun facts for President's Day about American presidents and Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey®, America's Living National Treasure®:

  • P.T. Barnum and circus performer Tom Thumb, just 25" tall, once had a meeting with President Abraham Lincoln, at 6'4" the tallest president ever, in the White House. Imagine how far Lincoln had to bend down to shake hands!
  • In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson attended a performance of The Greatest Show On Earth, and when he threw his hat into the center ring he confirmed his candidacy for President. That's where the expression "throw your hat into the ring" comes from!
  • In the history of the US, there have been more American presidents (43) than Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Ringmasters (33)!
  • The character of Uncle Sam is based on "Yankee Dan" Rice, America's first famous clown, and a friend of President Abraham Lincoln.
  • President Franklin Delano Roosevelt gave Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey dispensation during WWII to travel by rail because The Greatest Show On Earth was important for the country's morale!


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