Patrick, Warren A. (ed.) / Show world
(October 30, 1909)
Theatrical man sues Whitla for damages, p. 6
6 THE SHO HIGH JUMPER COWAN NEAR JAWS OF DEATH Well-Known Carnival Diver Has a Close Call at Princeton, Ill., During Red Men's Festival. Tom Covwan, the high jumper and diver, closed his season at the Red Men's Carnival at Princeton, Ill., last week and in his dive on Friday night had a narrow escape from being drowned in the small tank into which he (lives when giving his exhibition. Cowan, with his body swathed in cot- ton from his feet to his waist, sets it on fire as he jumps and at the same time, his tank is also set on fire around the sides. He uses four twenty-foot ladders and generally makes the jump from a heighth of seventy-two feet into a tank 12x14 feet. Wires Are Guides. Cowan, after iounting to the top, depends much on the top guy wires on each side of him to "center" the tank at the bottom, so he can strike the water without injury to him. These wires, when possible, are stretched at an exact angle by Cowan and long cus- tom has enabled him to tell by them when ,he is 'centered." Owing to a high wind on the night of his first jump, he could not stretch the wires and was forced to cut down the heighth of his jump on Friday when lie moved up to the limit. Having been unable to place his wires at their usual angle, he found himself vithout his usual famil- iar guides, and consequently, lie was greatly bothered. Trying to guage the -center of the tank, lie finally nerved himself to make the leap, knowing in- wardly that it was simply a matter of -conjecture, without the wires to "cen- ter" him. Cowan Has Close Call. He hit the tank near the side and had the breath knocked out of him. The fact that he did not come to the surface gave the carnival men, his manager and -others close to the tank great concern -and they were on the point of entering it to locate him, when lie finally came up to one side in a dazed condition. He was quickly assisted to a hotel, where he was wrapped in blankets and given stimulants. After some minutes, 'Cowan was himself again, feeling none the worse for his dangerous experi- ence. It was a close call for Cowan and lie will endeavor to make sure of hitting the center of the tank before again at- tempting the feat. Cowan, who is thirty-six years old, i. a native of Opeliba, Ala., starting in the high diving business when eighteen years old at Pensacola, Fla. The Princeton papers contained long accounts of Cowan's accident at its carnival. 'THEATER MANAGER IS SUED FOR TEN CENTS. Waukegan Showman Has a Novel Suit Brought Against Him-Price of Two Nickel Tickets The Cause. WAUKEGAX, Ill., Oct. 27-William Madsen, manager of a nickel theater here was sued for the sum of ten cents by A. E1. Parker, of Highland Park. In -explaining the suit Mr. Madsen said; "Sunday night, Oct. 3, Mr. Parker and wife came to my place and bought two tickets at 5 cents a piece. Being told that there was a full house, so they would lave to wait some few minutes, both went out again and went to an- other place, but only to find this packed too. They then decided to go 'back to my place, but in the meantime my lobby had filled up with people, and in order not to overcrowd this, I did not allow any more to get in, but 'told them to wait a few minutes. This I did in accordance with the city or- dinance, which forbids us to crowd aisles and lobbies. "Mr. Parker did not like to stand out- side, although it was a fine evening and -demanded to get in, having paid for his tickets. I asked him to kindly wait' a few minutes, but he demanded to get into the lobby or get his money back. This would have been the easi- -est way out of the whole thing, but the way lie asked, I simply told him that he was not any better than the other fifty people standing outside. "Mr. Parker now went to the police -and wanted them to interfere, but they refused, "A few days later, I was surprised by a constable with a summons from HighlandParkwithorder tomeet before Justice of Peace E. S. Gail on Satur- day, Oct. 15. Haled Into Court. "I did not at the time know the man's name or where he belonged and the constable did not know what the trouble was, and in order to find out something about it, I went to my law- yer, City Attorney E. V. Orvis, who -called Mr. Gail up over the 'phone and found out what the suit was about. In fact Mr. Tucker was suing me for 10 'cents and costs. "Saturday ewm and I went to High- land Park with my lawyer, Mr. Orvis. Outside of Mr. Gail's office we met Mr. Parker, and Mr. Orvis told both of us that there was a good chance to settle this affair without spending money on both sides. "As I did not start all this, I told them I did not care, but Mr. Parker held up his head high and would not settle, but go ahead with what he called a friendly 'test case.' "Arriving at the office of the justice, my lawyer demanded a jury trial, and I paid the money for this. "Mr. Parker now seemed to change his mind a little and started to talk about a settlement with my lawyer, and after an hour's talk too and fro, le was willing to settle if I would pay part of the cost and redeem the two tickets with ten cents. This I refused to do and I told him, that he had started this case and he could go ahead. I did not care if I had to spend a $100. "By and by, he cut down his de- mands and only wanted the ten cents for the tickets. I told him, however, that I would not pay him one cent and he could do just as lie pleased. In order to settle, my lawyer offered to buy the two tickets from Mr. Parker and keep them as souvenirs, and after some more talk, Mr. Parker gave in and received the ten cents and paid all the costs." Stock Company In Trouble. SANDUSKY, 0., Oct. 26-The season of stock at the Lyceum Theater ended abruptly last Tuesday owing to finan- cial troubles, but will probably reopen next Monday. This sudden close was effected by a third party, whom Messrs. Lawrence and Griffith had taken in with them, absconding with the box office receipts. W WORLD October 3o, i THEATRICAL MAN SUES WHITLA FOR DAMAGES Echo of Famous Kidnaping Case in Suit Filed in Ohio Town for $100,000 for Alleged False Imprisonment YOUNGSTON, 0., Oct. 27.-Joseph Wess, formerly manager of Avon Park, and well known in theatrical circles of various cities, has begun suit against James B. Whitla, of Sharon, Pa., the father of "Billy" Whitla, and the Per- kins Detective agency for alleged false and malicious imprisonment in con- nection with the famous kidnaping case Wess asks $100,000 damages.-ARMOR. Cole Animals a "Zoo." CORRY, PA., Oct. 26.-The manage- ment of Cole Brothers' circus decided it would be more convenient for the men if all the stock was together, there- fore all the animals were removed to- day from the radiator building and in- stalled in Floral and Agricultural halls at the fair grounds. The show is wintering four elephants, seven camels, two cages of monkeys and one of birds, besides 20 cages of carnivorous animals. So interested are Corry people, that a day is to be set aside each week for visitors to see the "Zoo." There are 104 baggage horses and 3S head of ring stock being win- tered here. James Downs arrived from Toronto Sunday evening, accompanied by Mrs. Martin Downs. Harry Potter is in charge of the circus here. Nothing has as yet been given out for publication, so it will be some time before it is known if tnere will be any changes be- fore the opening of another season. The Cole Brothers' snow has always been a hard competitor of the larger circuses, billing as heavily as any of them, yet playing only two rings and a stage, and carrying only 22 cars, and it is a known fact that Ringling Bro- thers would like to see the show out of the way.-BERLINER NORRIS &ROWE WINTER QUARTERSTO BESOLD Suit begun in California Court to Recover Money Subscribed by Citizens for the Well-Known Show. SANTA CRUZ, Cal., Oct. 27.-The Norris & Rowe circus winter quarters will be sold, and after all debts have been paid those who subscribed to pur- chase the property will receive their pro rata of the proceeds. A suit was commenced in the Superior Court by F. D. Baldwin and W. T. Jeter against Duncan McPherson and a long list of defendants, who were F. A. Hihn, Wil- liamson & Garrett, Henry Willey, Walti & Schilling Co., J. J. C. Leonard, Wes- sendorf & Staffler, Kate Handley, F. H. Parker, Robinson & Co., Montroyd Sharpe, D. W. Johnston, James Nor- mand, S. Leask, Francis Budgett, J. W. Forgeus, J. M. Walsh, 0. J. Lincoln L. N.Trumbly, John Notley, F. R. Cum- mings, Mabel Dieter, administrator, Ma- kinney & Dake, C. D. Hinkle, C. E. Fa- gen, E. Jeffrey & Son, D. Jonas, J. W. Dickinson, S. H. Bailey & Son. H. E. Irish, J. B. Maher, F. R. Walti and Joseph F. Geisler as trustees of Clar- ence I. Norris and Hutton S. Rowe. In the complaint it states that on May 12, 1905, all the defendants, with the exception of F. R. Walti and Jos. Geisler, subscribed $3,495 toward win- ter quarters for the circus in amounts ranging from $5 to $400. To raise the balance, a promissoryv note for $1,200 was executed, due April 12, 1907, on which is due $693.61. The real property cost $1,711.50. Nor- ris & Rowe have only paid thereon two $300 payments and $541.54 for taxes. The plaintiffs have in hand $2.50, and there is due for taxes, 1908-09, first in- stalment, $74.11; second installment, $74.09. The plaintiffs ask the court to de- cide that neither Geisler nor Norris have any lien on the property. They ask that the court order the sale of the property; that after the costs and attorney fees are paid; also the plaintiff for money advanced, that the balance should be divided pro rata according to amounts of money ad- vancd. STERNAD FORMS NEW PRODUCING COMPANY. Well-Known Vaudeville Man Will Book His Own Acts Through Chicago Sources-Opens Offices at 167 Dearborn Street. Announcement has been made that Jake A. Sternad, formerly connected with the Western Vaudeville Managers' association, who recently severed his connection with that organization, has formed what will hereafter be known as the National Producing company, and in addition to staging and producing acts for vaudeville, will put big attrac- tions on the road. Sternad will not any booking except his own ac through Chicago sources. Since he lef the W. V. M. A., Sternad has not be t letting the grass grow under his fe and he has been planning to spri some surprises on the public, the firs being consummated this week when he signed with Jack Johnson for the latter to tour under his guidance, announcE ment of wihich is made elsewhere this week's Show World. Sternad, who is a prominent Elk and is associated with other organizations has a number of big acts in vaudeville at present and is arranging to put oth ers out before the season is over. H has been in the vaudeville managerial and booking game for twelve years and for five years was with the W, V. M. A. Fred Kressman, who has been Ster.- nad's secretary and personal representa tive for the past year, will contine to act in the same capacity for Mr. Ster- nad. Sternad, on Wednesday afternoon, made arrangements for permanent head. quarters in Room 503 in the buildingat 167 Dearborn street. STERNAD SIGNS NEGRO CHAMPION J. JOHNSON. Big Brunette Heavyweight Will Read a Vaudeville Troupe Which Will Soon Go on the Road. Following the announcement that J. A. Sternad, formerly of the Western Vaudeville Managers' Association, has organized a producing company and would act as its general director, Ster. nad announced that he had secured Jack Johnson, the negro champion prize- fighter, to head an all-star vaudeville troupe, which Sternad will send on the road in a fortnight. While the arrangements were prac- tically made on last Tuesday, It became generally known that Sternad had signed Johnson as his newest vaudeville attraction, when the big black visited Sternad at the Saratoga hotel Wednes- day afternoon, just prior to his depart- tire for New York city. The crowd that followed the "champion" jammed the hotel corridor, and it was necessary to have a squad ofpolice to makeway for the fighter. Johnson and Sternal completed their plans for Shefarmer's triumphal entry into vaudeville, appear ing solely under Sternad's guidance. Johnson is bound to prove a great drawing card anywhere by reason of his prize ring prominence and recentvictor over that popular white "scrapper," Stanley Ketchell. Sternad says his new offering will be known as the Jack Johnson All-Star Vaudeville Troupe, and that he wille the only negro in the company, fifteen white artists being engaged for the show. In addition to the champion heavt" weight pugilist appearing with his sparring partner in a scientific exhibi- tion of the manly art, the pictures5of his fight with Ketchell on October 16 will be shown. Sternad has known Johnson for sIX or seven years, and by reason of his long acquaintance with the fighter,was able to get first call onhis services as a vaudeville novelty. Johnson's contract holds good until the day le begins training for his fight with Jeffries. The tour of the Johnson troupe will begin in two weeks. Acrobat is Injured. Max Sandor, the agile "topper" of the Sandor trio of acrobats, which openea last Monday afternoon at the Ameri- can Music Hall, was injured during the first performance and the act wa forced to close for the week, the man- agement of the Morris house gettin George W. Day, the blackface come- dian, to fill in the gap at the night show. Sand rwas working through one of the trio's difficult stunts, 'w-ere a strap is used and it broke, precipitat ing him to the stage floor in such mnanner that hisleft armwas painfullY injured. The trio had gotten along toward the finish when the accident occurred and the artist complained of severe pain it his left shoulder. The injury will no prove a serious one and the acrobats will be able to resume their work ina few days. Sandor, while the oldest of the trio, is the shortest, and in the act, has some hazardous feats to performfrm the shoulders of his acrobaticbrothers. The Sandors were the closing number on the bill, but the mishap to 1laxand the subsequent engagement of Pat through a hurry-up call, caused ashit in the program at night. 'ii REPRESENTATIVE ARTISTS are cordially invited to make THE SHOW WORLD their permanent address. Our mail forwarding facilities are unexcelled. Keep us sup- plied with your route as far in advance as possible. SEND US YOUR NEWS ITEMS. 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