C.A. Wright’s Trained Dogs, Birds and Vaudeville Show
Today is the birthday of Chester Augustus Wright (1890-1980). From the late 1910s through decades afterward he traveled with his own self-contained tent show that toured the rural east coast north to south (with the seasons, like geese). As his family grew, so grew C.A. Wright’s Trained Dogs, Birds and Vaudeville Show. Wright himself presented the trained animals and participated in comedy skits with his children Estelle and Donald. Wife Ola Gay sang and played musical instruments. The show was occasionally enhanced with an extra guest performer or two with more exotic skills; they also showed movies. The Wrights also founded what was to become a popular summer colony for vaudevillians on Lake Blaisdell in New Hampshire. Daughter Estelle married Pat Rooney III.
To find out more about the history of vaudeville, consult No Applause, Just Throw Money: The Book That Made Vaudeville Famous, available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and wherever nutty books are sold.
And check out my new book: Chain of Fools: Silent Comedy and Its Legacies from Nickelodeons to Youtube, just released by Bear Manor Media, also available from amazon.com etc etc etc