Edmond Ansley: Wore Buster Brown Shoes

Edmond Ansley (William Edmond Ansley, 1891-1972), 42 inches tall was billed as “The Smallest Man in the World”, though many made that claim. His professional career had scarely begun when at age 19 the Arkansas native was hired to be the mascot for the Brown Shoe Company, hawking Buster Brown Shoes. Dressed to resemble the comic strip character in a long wig, short pants and patent leather shoes he criss-crossed the country making personal appearances over a period of 28 years, logging in 50,000 miles a year. This 1946 photo speaks for itself, I believe:

Ansley’s grave marker in Cooke County, Texas, is testament to the size of his footprint:

For more on performing little people please check out Rose’s Royal Midgets and Other Little People in Vaudeville.