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More like this: burlesque, moulin rouge and saloon girls.

Victorian Burlesque~Circus~Show & Call Girls

Prostitution in Victorian England was legal & a part of everyday life for people from every class, ethnicity, & gender. The number of women prostituting during the Victorian Age was staggeringly high. Unless you had a husband to support you the life of the working class woman was considered a breeding ground for failure due to low wages & limited jobs for a woman (i.e, seamstress, governess, teacher). There were somewhere between 8,000 & 80,000 prostitutes in London during the Victorian Age.

Forepaugh & Sells Bros Circus, ca. 1899

Vintage Photos of Circus Performers from 1890s - 1910s

Frederick Bancroft 'Slave of the Orient ' (c. 1895)

vintage photographs of circus performers - c.1890s-1910s [via vintage everyday; link to set of images]

Miss Jenny ~ evidently a corsetted circus act with dalmations, a poodle, a pit bull & a couple Jack Russells -- must've been some show...

Dutch born Margaretha Geertruida Zelle, or more famously known as Mata Hari. She was an exotic dancer, courtesan, and (wrongly) convicted spy for both the French and Germans during World War 1.

Vintage Photograph Circus Black and White Trapeze Artist Woman Victorian

tattoo lady from Victorian era

Bianca Bianchi as Violetta Valery in “La Traviata” by Giuseppe Verdi, sometime after 1880..

Geraldine Farrar, born in 1882, was an American soprano noted for her beauty, acting ability, and "the intimate timbre of her voice..

Julia Bulette was a prostitute working the gold mine camps at Virginia City, Nevada. She was brutally murdered and John Millian arrested for her murder. It took months to find an unbiased jury as she was loved by so many. A jury was finally found. Millian was hanged in 1868.

These types of business cards were given to men at train stations as they entered town to advertise houses of prostitution. These cards were in popular and open use until the 1930's. The women were called "Soiled Doves" in the Victorian era. During the Civil War there was such a huge epidemic of venereal disease that in one town the army quarantined "doves" on a river boat. BiddyCraft

Wings - Joaquín Blez, photographer

Not enough Victorian lady boxers. Hattie Stewart - World Female Boxing Champion 1884.

Edwardian era circus performer Pansy Chinery (c. 1916) dangling in the air by her teeth.

Lottie Collins (1865–1910) was an East End singer and dancer, most famous for introducing the song "Ta-ra-ra Boom-de-ay!" (Photo ca. 1892)

Brothel in Jerome, AZ. Jennie's Place. It was built in 1898 by Legendary Madam Belgian Jennie Bauters. She became the richest woman in the Arizona territory before she was murdered.