James Leo Duffy on Al Barnes Circus Wagon

James Leo Duffy on Al Barnes Circus Wagon

Bert Leo (James Leo Duffy) on Al Barnes' Circus Wagon -1920

Clowns (left to right): Curley Phillipps, Bill Taffe, and Bert Leo. Driver of the wagon is unknown.

Bert Leo's real name was James Leo Duffy. He was born 13 Apr 1882 in New Castle, Lawrence County, PA. James was the son of Keziah Hilliard Duffy and Goerge Duffy. He started out as an acrobat in a vaudeville show in 1900.

He became a trick rider and later a clown in the circus. He worked as a clown in the following circuses: Al Barnes' Circus, Sells-Floto Circus, and John Robinson's Circus. Bert also did bit parts in silent movies. He was in the silent movie titled, "The Little Clown" (1921) with the actress, Mary Miles Minter. James died 28 Sep 1940 in Youngstown, Mahoning County, OH.

Photograph from the collection of Eileen McCummins Stickle, great-grand niece of James Leo Duffy.


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