Skip to main content

Stories from the Road

“Jackpots” is a carnival term for war stories. There is no shortage of jackpots for Bingo’s days travelling with an animal menagerie.

Robbie Hauser jackpot – “One of my favourite stories was about one of Bingo’s monkeys going missing on the show. A few hours later the cops called and said “you better come and bail your monkey out of jail”.

Audio clip with transcript “Monkey Gets Arrested”

Wendy Hauser jackpot – “The reptiles had to be kept in the kitchen near the woodstove in the winter”.

Black and white photo of three men holding a very large snake

Bingo Hauser, Billy Captain and Others Hauling a Large Snake, Circa 1940s

Laura Hibbs jackpot – “A snake once arrived dead, but since it was the day before the opening (no chance of getting the money back for the snake) they put the dead snake in the show and poked it to make it move”.

Audio clip with transcript: “Even with a Dead Snake, The Show Must Go On”

Robbie Hauser jackpot – “My dad remembers a crocodile giving birth in the bathtub,  and being on the road, sharing the back seat of a Cadillac with an alligator which they smuggled into motel rooms at night”.

Black and white photo of a lion in a cage, sign below the cage says Please Keep Back

Simba, Circa 1950s

Wendy Hauser jackpot – “An inspector from the S.P.C.A. came to check that the lions were being well taken care of. The lions had just eaten before he got there. He tried to feed the lion lettuce and greens but Jackie was quick to say do not feed that to them, lions are meat eaters. He tried to argue with her but with no success. He left feeling rather foolish.”