Judging by the poster alone, this must have been something to see back in 1898. This is a beautiful poster that really packs in a lot of details. Not sure if everything in the poster is actually in the show, but check out those “water canoes” being worn as shoes by the couple in the lower right.
I only associated Barnum & Bailey with the famous circus, I didn’t know they did anything else. I wonder how the clowns would keep their makeup on in the water, but what a treat this must have been!