Item #CL201-14 Wild Australian Children
Wild Australian Children
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Wild Australian Children

1872. Colour lithograph, trade card, text includes publisher’s line “Warner Johnson & Co. Buffalo & New York”, 9.3 x 6.1cm. Irregular margins, minor creases, soiling to surface.

Held in National Library of Australia, with the comment “[This is a] trade card, possibly issued by P.T. Barnum, based on a carte-de-visite format photograph by Charles D. Fredricks from the early 1860s. A portrait of two microcephalic sideshow ‘freaks’, whose physical appearance led them to be referred to at the time by promoters and commentators as ‘pinheads.’ The children were billed as Hoomio and Iola, who had purportedly been found in the interior of Australia. An anonymous contemporary promotional pamphlet, which gives a fictitious account of their background, is recorded in several Australian collections…Hoomio and Iola are known to have been exhibited by promoters from around 1864 to at least 1869. They represented an opportunity for promoters to exploit the controversy surrounding the Darwinian theory of evolution, and were shamelessly portrayed to audiences as specimens of a ‘missing link’ in the evolutionary chain…”

Item #CL201-14

Price (AUD): $880.00  other currencies

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