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The Mass Grave That Holds The Remains Of Five Dozen Circus Performers

Circus performers, vaudevillians and carnival folk are a breed apart from the actors we think of as the backbone of the entertainment industry today.

They also form a much more tightly knit communities than those who work in Hollywood, because trust in your fellow performers is paramount when you're constantly traveling from town to town.

So it makes sense circus performers would want to be buried alongside their own, spending the afterlife with their fellow showfolk so the show can go on for eternity.

But Showmen's Rest isn't the realization of circus performer dreams- it's a mass grave where around 60 circus performers from the Hagenbeck-Wallace Circus were buried after a tragic train wreck claimed their lives back in 1918.

On June 22, 1918, an empty Michigan Central Railroad troop train collided with their stopped circus train around Hessville, Indiana, because the troop train's engineer was asleep at the wheel.

The Showmen's League of America had just purchased burial land in Woodlawn Cemetery in 1913, so the victims of the wreck, many of whom couldn't be identified, were some of the first to be buried in the Showmen's Rest section of the cemetery.

Read A Mass Grave Holds These Circus Performers. They're Buried Together For A Tragic Reason here


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