Dick S Dudley

History of local circus.

September 6, 1896 - March 7,1981


Dick S “Cheyenne” Dudley was a Bar X cowboy until 1914 when he won money from a Wild West show riding broncs. With the prize money, he purchased a show of his own. After serving in the U.S. Army's 36th Division in World War I, he came to Archer County and married Ruth Wolf in 1926. The DS Dudley show travelled through Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, New Mexico, and Colorado. The show grew to 250 employees and it traveled eight months out of the year.


The show's headquarters were in Mankins, where most of the employees wintered during the "off" months. Travelers on the adjacent highway, who were unacquainted with the area and unaware of the Dudley show, were often shocked to see an elephant, Yvonne, apparently living in someone’s yard. There were stories told of a chimp that crossed the highway.


The DS Dudley Show was a family affair, with the Dudley children having been put to work taking tickets for rides by the age of eight years. Evelyn Wade, one of the Dudley daughters, carried on the legacy with her own show, which was known as ATT Amuseuments. The buildings on the Dudley property are still standing and it’s not hard to imagine them being full of animals.


Photographs