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Original 1920 "Snyder bros. Circus and Wild West" Stone Lithograph Poster

In Posters and Prints > Circus Posters and Ephemera > Show & Tell and Advertising > Circus Memorabilia > Show & Tell.
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Posted 6 years ago


(110 items)

This is an original Snyder Brothers Circus and Wild West stone lithograph from my private collection of Circus posters. Circa. 1920 printed by Riverside Printing Co. in Chicago.

This is actually what is called a "Stock Poster" meaning, the image displayed was used for various circuses including "Walter L. Main", the specific circus name would be printed on the tops of these posters but the poster image would be the same. What makes this poster so unique is the graphic and unusual detail of the Bengal tiger's faces, unparalleled to any other Circus poster during this time.

This poster has been in the family for decades and has just surfaced from one of our storage units. This is a prime example of what happens to antique posters if they are NOT professionally linen backed and stored properly, as a result there is missing paper on the top, around the edges, and 2 spots in the center of the poster. This poster has now been linen backed and is stored properly to preserve what is left of it.


  1. Circusposters Circusposters, 5 years ago
    Over the years a number of circuses had "Snyder" in the title, but the Snyder Bros Circus & Wild West of 1931-32 (owned by Frank Snyder) is the show that purchased this poster from Riverside Litho of Milwaukee. Snyder Bros was a typical "mud show" of the early Depression era and while advertising for the show promised "Ferocious Bengal Tigers", small towns that it played were more likely entertained by the "ponies, burros and riding monkeys" that were also on the bill. One of the big events to happen on the Synder Bros. Circus of 1931 was the escape and capture of a small leopard in the tiny (pop. 500) town of Red Creek, NY on the evening of Friday May 1, 1931. Evidently the leopard had escaped the night before but the management of the circus didn't alert authorities. The next morning the wife of farmer George Reynolds found the remains of several chickens in their barnyard. She and her husband suspected a weasel was the culprit - and were surprised to find the leopard curled up in a nest in the henhouse. The circus was notified and the leopard was "reunited with its mate" Not much is known about Snyder Bros today, however in addition to this nice poster produced by Riverside, they did also purchase at least one poster from the Donaldson Litho Co. of Newport Kentucky. Another fact that IS known from contemporary newspaper accounts indicates that the circus also provided a street parade, something that was not uncommon for small circuses of that time. Admission to Snyder Bros during the summer of 1931 was 25 and 50 cents - presumably farmer Reynolds and family would be admitted for free
  2. zguy2112 zguy2112, 5 years ago
    Thanks for the history Chris, very funny story about the chickens. Thanks again.

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