How the Bearded Lady Found Love

The Human Marvels has a neat story about what Jean Carroll, a bearded lady and popular circus performer, did for love:

As a young lady Carroll met a charming young Ohio man and quickly fell in love. The object of her affection was John Carson. Carson was a charming and handsome man. He was a contortionist and sideshow talker and he was actually quite taken by the sweet-hearted bearded girl. He was certainly attracted to Carroll but the beard was simply too much for him to overcome. While he continued to be friendly with Carroll, he pushed aside any romantic aspirations and focused on friendship.

For fifteen years the two saw each other almost daily. As Carson got to know Carroll for the woman she was, behind the whiskers, he fell deeply in love with her. Carroll saw that love in him and it pained her. She knew he would never be able to accept the beard and she, in turn, could not give up her source of livelihood and her home in the carnival. As she cried one night, sword swallower Alec Linton suggested a painful solution.

She followed the suggestion and got her man. Read the article to see what she did: Link

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There are images of her with her tattoos.

This is one of those rare happy side-show stories. So many of the "freaks" had trouble. Even if the circus they ran with did take care of them.

Jean Carroll is one of the side-show characters I really enjoy reading about. The same with Johnny Eck. He was able to make a fairly happy life for himself. Even despite his lack of a lower body.
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Sweet, but... ultimately how strong can the relationship be when you are changing something so that the other person can feel okay with loving you?
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I agree, it was sweet. I shudder to imagine how long it took and how painful it was to get 700 tattoos!! It's too bad the link did not include images of that body art.
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Aww. That's an incredibly sweet story. But when it said she heard a "painful solution" from a sword swallower, I didn't know what to expect.
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