Topper Martyn and His Famous Juggling Family

Topper Martyn was born Victor Clifton Martyn in London, England, in 1923. He was the son of famed Australian jugglers, Martyn and Florence. His mother, Maude Florence Martyn (nee Thyer) came from a circus family with four centuries of history as performers. She had been trained as a juggler by the famed performer Paul Cinquevalli. Topper’s father, also named Victor, …

The History of 7 Club Juggling

In a previous article, I wrote about the history of 6 club solo juggling and even discussed the first performers to juggle 3, 4, and 5 clubs. In this article, we will examine the history of 7 club juggling. John Breen The first person that we know who juggled 7 clubs was John Breen of the Breen Family Jugglers. You …

The Three Famous Russells

In August 2021, juggler Rick Robinson, better known in the juggling community as Piqua Rick, sent me some photos that he had taken at the Garst Museum in Greenville, Ohio. The photos showed an exhibit of juggling props from an act from the 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s named the Three Famous Russells. Now, I live only about an hour from …

Just Juggling Jottings by Clever Conkey – An Old Juggling History Article

In July of 2021, eJuggle published an article featuring A Juggler and His Art, an article from 1910 that gave us a glimpse into what a juggling historian of the period knew and thought about the art form. You can click here to read it. The response to that article was quite strong, so I thought it would be prudent to follow …

The History of the Candelabra Trick

Candles and candlesticks have long been popular props for gentlemen jugglers, who used items that might be found in a proper Victorian gentleman’s home. Kara (1867-1939), who is debatably the first gentleman juggler, performed a trick where he flipped a candle out of a candlestick and lit the candle in midair before catching it back in the candlestick. His friend …

Rose Sheldon – A Pictorial History

Rose Sheldon was a well-known and important American juggler who worked both as a solo performer and with a number of juggling teams / groups during the first half of the twentieth century. Fitzgerald’s Eight Juggling Girls Rose was first a member of Fitzgerald’s Eight Juggling Girls, which performed in the first decade of the 1900s. The troupe was headed …

Juggling Treasures Discovered From The Late 1800s

The Museum of Juggling History has quite a number of props made by Edward Van Wyck, the famous prop maker from Cincinnati, Ohio who created clubs and other juggling props from 1895 to 1919. You can click here and here to see many of these. Up until recently, these were the oldest known juggling props in the museum’s collection and …

Chester Dolphin – Juggler, Balancer, and Sword Swallower

  Chester Dolphin was born in 1907 in Worchester, Massachusetts (USA). He began his performing career in 1933 and was a very versatile artist, performing juggling, sword swallowing, unicycling, and hand balancing. His act changed often, sometimes being more of a juggling act and sometimes focusing more on his balancing or sword swallowing. It appears that he was originally focused …

Old Juggling Prop Catalogs – Part 5 – Charles De Vere Catalog

In 2016, I wrote a series of eJuggle articles showing prop catalogs from the 1880s to the 1940s. You can click here, here, here, and here to see them. Here is another very old catalog from France, The De Vere Juggling Props Catalog. Charles De Vere Charles De Vere (Herbert Shakespeare Gardiner Williams) (1843-1931) was a British magician who opened …