Juggler's World: Vol. 39, No. 2

Why It Was Called a Newsletter

News and Letters From The First 10 Years Of The IJA

More than anything, the "Juggler's Bulletin" and "Newsletter" were monthly get-togethers of "regular folks" concerned about each other and their art. At the heart of the IJA was the informal, back-fence sharing of news, humor and tragedy:

A letter from Bobby May from Oklahoma City gave us the dope that he would be there for a few days with the Skating Vanities. We hopped an early train and caught the show and better yet, had a swell chat (till 3 or 4 in the morning). You'll have to see the juggling to really appreciate it and when he does come your way, don't fail to look up Bobby and Emily May - Emily might even rig up a swell sandwich and beer as she so kindly did for us. Bobby has a swell collection of pictures and bills back home, which he promises to share with Bulletin readers at some future date.
(JB 3/45)

A swell letter from Eddie Sheelar who has combined gun spinning with a McCaw bird to make a neat opening.
(JB 3/45)

Our literary hawk, Spud Roberts reports pics of June Haver juggling hoops in "Movie Life", Sept., page 30. Ronald Reagan juggling 3 plates, Nov. issue of same mag, p. 31.
(JB 11/47)

Selma Braatz writes from Nurnberg, Germany, thanking us for the group photo taken at the Convention. She reports that things are getting a little better for them there and that they hope to see the end of rationing soon. They are working clubs for the U.S. troops and in September are going to play a beautiful new theater in Stuttgart, which just opened August 1st. She would love to hear from any of you who know her. Write c/o Metropol Theater, Stuttgart, Germany, U.S. Zone.

Those of you who have known or heard of Francis Brunn's sister, Lotti, (who is an excellent juggler herself) who has in the past been assistant in her brother's act, will be glad to know that she is expecting a new little juggler just any day now. Lotti is at present in California.

It is with deep regret, we announce the death of one of our members - Edward Van Wyck, 1324 E. St., Lincoln, Neb.

Just heard that I.J.A. member, Jerry Ashton, 6091 N. 40th St., Milwaukee 9, Wis., has polio. I'm sure he would appreciate hearing from other jugs. Jerry and his wife, Margo, do a hand balancing act, and for the past four years Jerry has also been doing a single jug act, and a very good one from what I hear.
(Betty Gorham, 10/52)

Learned from Johnny Lux that Bobby May's little son, Bobby Jr., is hospitalized - a victim of polio. I'm sure that Bobby will have the best wishes of every member for his son's early recovery.

A letter from Bobby May tells us that Bobby Jr. is progressing slowly. Hoped to have him home for Thanksgiving Day and then back to the hospital for further therapy and treatments.

Ray Kneeland (Buffalo booking agent) brought seven acts down for the local March of Dimes show. Among them was one of our own IJA boys, Louis Rich, who put on a very entertaining act and went over real big.
(Doc Crosby, 5/53)

New Member: Francis Brunn

On September 5th Doc and Eva Crosby were in a serious auto accident on their way to Toronto; Doc sustaining head injuries and Eva with 8 ribs and a leg broken. Last report heart was that Doc is out of the hospital and Eva is doing as well as can be expected. We all wish her speedy recovery!

A note from Bill and Eva Crosby tells that Eva has had her two casts removed and hopes to be walking again soon. She wishes to thank members for their cards sent during her convalescence.

Eva Crosby certainly has the worst luck. She was just up and around after the auto accident of last September, when she fell and broke her leg again. Doc writes that she is progressing well though, and will be out of the hospital again in about two weeks.

Carl Thorson informs us that he crushed a finger in the door of his agents car and will have to take a few weeks off.

Lou Meyer and Vin Carey both report sprained ankles. Somebody better explain "kick-ups" to these guys.

Beginning Jan. 1st, 1957 the dues will be $2.00 per year, all payments due on this date.

Wanted for personal collection. All kinds of handcuffs, leg-irons, thumb-cuffs, thumb screws, manacles, shackles, restraining devices, etc. Will buy any such articles or will appreciate information where same can be obtained. Contact Larry Weeks.

Lane Blumenthal says Max Kock (Germany) went over the top in sending us so much good news from Europe.

Nick Gatto, formerly of the Los Gattos Trio, is now a full fledged juggler in Baltimore. His birthday is Feb. 13th. His son John will be 3 years old on Feb. 9th. Happy birthday.

Bill Cash Jr. did a television show in Cleveland April 7. Bob and Lois Jackson invited him to their home and a jugfest followed. Bill, Bob, Lois and Johnny Lux did 12 clubs (feed trick) in a 14x16 living room. While getting in line at Radio City Music Hall in N.Y., Cash Jr. found himself standing behind a jug from Baltimore. It was Nick Gatto, whose wife is soloist with the orchestra there. It's a small world. Ed. Note: (they don't make worlds like they used to.)

The Job Nobody Wants: Editorial Woes

Unattributed pieces were usually the contribution of the current editor.

The job of putting out the Newsletter has traditionally been the least sought-after position in the IJA. The following excerpts will give you an indication why, and perhaps a better appreciation for the publication you hold in your hands:

As you may have noted, the April issue of the Newsletter seemed to have struck a snag - it came out late; there were a good many typographical errors in it; my personal notes to Jeannette to guide her in re-typing for mimeographing were left in; and the sequence of the news items was mixed up. Jeannette had her personal troubles to hamper her usual efficient handling of her end of getting out the newsletter - her daughter's illness, a death in the family and an automobile accident. She turned the Newsletter over to the mimeographing firm as it came from me, and they copied it, personal notes and all, but did not follow the instructions in those personal notes. This happened because our usually efficient mimeographer was ill, herself, and had turned the work over to a typist, through necessity. Better luck in the future, we hope.

WANTED: Editor for Jugglers' Newsletter. Those of you who were at the convention will recall that, at that time, it was not decided who would be Editor of the Newsletter. So, for the present, I (Ruth Helmrich, Oliver's wife) have consented to take over until such time as a permanent editor is found. Therefore, if anyone out there feels he or she would like to be an Editor, please feel free to speak up.

It has been truly written that excuses are not necessary since our friends do not need them and our enemies do not believe them. However, even though we feel sure that you are all our friends we also feel that you should have some explanation as to why YOUR Newsletters are so late. To begin with, it requires a minimum of eight hours to prepare each issue and under all ordinary circumstances that is not too much of a chore. But lately that eight hours has been a bit difficult to get. Ruth has not only been very busy with running a home, raising two fine kids, doing a bit more than her share of PTA and church work but has not been feeling up to par, then to top it all off her steam iron blew up and burned her painfully about the head and shoulders. Art did not go on the road this year and so expected to have more time to devote to such things but he is deeply involved in building a new business, a kiddie park, and that is taking far more time than anyone ever dreamed. Stu is teaching at the University of Pittsburgh in addition to his studies and work. All of these things have sort of ganged up on us to such an extent that obviously some things just couldn't get done and one of the many was, unfortunately, the Newsletter. We will try to do better in the future, keep your fingers crossed. Please do forgive us, won't you?

In getting out my first Newsletter, I realize what a terrific job it is. For a man working every day, or a housewife compiling news between daily chores, seems almost impossible. To all the former newsletter editors: 'I don't see how you did it.' However, with an office and studio downtown plus the help and advice of Mr. Mac Green, my associate here, who also has volunteered the use of his modern machines, I will try to give you a monthly paper you will be proud of - and so our first edition goes to press.

For those that never attend a convention we thought a word or two as to how the NEWSLETTER is produced might be of interest. We are limited to four pages as that is the limit that will go for a 4 cent stamp. From the letters received we have to select what we think is of most interest to ALL and then condense it so that we will be able to get the meat of the article into our limited space. When we have the best arrangement we can make, the master copy goes to our great friend, Mac Green who furnishes the stencils, the paper and the envelopes, cuts the stencils and runs 300 copies of each page. For ALL this he receives $10.00. Lou and Vin then assemble and staple the pages together to make the finished NEWSLETTER. In the meantime the envelopes have to be imprinted with return address etc. with rubber stamps, addressed with the addressograph machine and stamps attached. When NEWSLETTER is ready they are then folded and stuffed and envelopes sealed. Each month there are additional chores such as changing addressograph plates and getting new ones for new members etc. In nearly two years we failed only once in getting the NEWSLETTER into the mail on or before the 15th of the month. For all this we receive NO COMPENSATION whatever, we pay our dues the same as anybody else and use our typewriters, our cars and gas to run the errands gladly. We would be that much more thankful if we did not get snide criticisms because we do not please everyone. WE DO THE BEST WE KNOW HOW and are ready to turn the task over to anyone that can do better.

Newsletter Fans, and Otherwise

These jugglers "Newsletters" are wonderful to me and I guess everyone else. In almost every letter something comes up that I know about, or somebody's name is mentioned that refreshes my mind.
(Gus Clark, 11/51)

I have just received my copy of the juggling "Newsletter," and as usual I find it boring drivel. I joined the juggling association with the hope of learning something, such as gag routines, or building props, but to no avail. Since books on juggling are few and far between, an association like this one should accept the challenge of providing information, not useless drivel. I doubt very much if I will renew my membership for the reasons mentioned.
(Bruce Nelson, 3/71)

Why It Was Called a Newsletter / Index, Vol. 39, No. 2 / jis@juggling.org
© 1996 Juggling Information Service. All Rights Reserved.