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Bannister's Circus Token

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Copper (30mm) (D.& W.9/92;M.G.587).

The British Museum has this & another of Bannister's "tickets or passes" the other one is signed by my old friend Bagnall(William) http://www.britishmuseum.org/research/collection_online/collection_object_details/collection_image_gallery.aspx?assetId=737375001&objectId=81417&partId=1 , this one is unfortunately unsigned, though the names Durn and Itley have been scratched under the performers. Bannister's forename is given as James and as Jas(for James) in the very few available references, strangely on the Bagnall example he has In(for John) probably just a mistake. Bagnall's female rider is, I believe, Bannister's daughter Sarah(?), who after Bannister went bankrupt circa 1818, joined the famous Astley's circus and became the star attraction there, as she previously had been at her Father's Olympic Circus. The rider on my version is a man(possibly Bannister?) and leads me to believe it is the earlier of the two, so it might be date-able as 1800-1814.
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Nice token and info.

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A very minor correction, what I thought was DURN is BURN(for, I suspect, a rider in the circus, Burne) see 1816 poster clipping. He was still performing in 1824 at an Edinburgh equestrian theatre show

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This is signed by my old friend Bagnall and completes the set of 2 Bannister Circus tickets/passes known.

 

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