Saturday, March 31, 2007

Harley Sadler Show

I don't know what prompted the thought, but I had a backflash of memory this week. Back to when I was about seven years old and got to go to the Harley Sadler Tent Show.

Sadler toured the show throughout West Texas in the 30's and 40's until the air-conditioned movie theaters put him out of business. The show came to Hamlin frequently, and wonder of wonders, they set up the tent across the street from my grandmother's house. I got to watch the tent go up and all the beginning activity, not thinking that I would get a chance to go.

I don't know how my folk afforded it, but we went and saw the show--much like vaudeville. Sadler played Toby the Clown. I don't remember any of the show, except the band and the music, but I remember what a treat it was to go. I think we even got cotton candy and popcorn. Maybe that is where I got my taste for Broadwayl

Sadler eventually retired his shows, moved to Abilene and ran for the Texas Legislature where he served three terms. Even then the Legislature was filled with eccentrics like Toby the Clown!

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