Circuit Chautauquas Beginning - 1904...
We have been doing some online research for the term "Chautauquas" to help identify some of the childern in the "1910 Alva - Chautauqua" penny postcard we ran last week.
So far... what we found out is that the "Circuit Chautauquas" grew from an idea by "Redpath Lyceum Bureau" Keith Vawter (manager), beginning in 1904. These programs started with lecturers, elocutionists, artists, and musicians. During the years of the circuit chautauquas, magicians, menageries, plays, and operas were added to the schedules. Even programs for the children were a popular way to get the whole family involved in the chautauqua, which could last from three to nine (normally seven) days. A thirty year run of the circuit chautauquas supported by numerous circuits run by a couple of dozen agencies brought "culture under canvas" right to the doorstep of millions of people throughout the country, particularly the midwest.
There was also mention that the Chautauqua back east educated Sunday School teachers. Does anyone out there have any clues to the identity of any of these children and teacher? Were they from Alva and/or surrounding communities?
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