End of the line for circus trains
It was April of 1872, the 18th to be exact. That was the day William C. Coup put the Barnum Circus on rails. An American tradition was born.
By 1903, the Barnum & Bailey was traveling, touring the country on an 83-car train while the Ringling Bros. Circus utilized an 85-car train. According to Trains magazine, 1911 marked the apex of the circus train with 31 individual circus shows traveling by train.
Considering its history, it seems fitting then that Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey would be the last circus to travel by rail. They actually operated two trains to support their two separate circuses. According to the circus, the Red Unit was made up of 34 passenger cars and 20 equipment flatcars. The Blue Unit consisted of 35 passenger cars and 21 equipment flatcars.