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The Wizard of the Wire sells peace bonds

The Australian Government used innovative methods to encourage people to buy peace bonds, to help recover the cost of the war. In this clip, Colleano & Sole Bros Circus zoo animals join the promotional campaign.

Year:c1918 - 1919

LocationMelbourne, Australia

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The Wizard of the Wire sells peace bonds

The Australian Government used innovative methods to encourage people to buy peace bonds, to help recover the cost of the war. In this clip, Colleano & Sole Bros Circus zoo animals join the promotional campaign.


Year: c1918 - 1919

Length: 1:06

Production Company: Australasian Films

Credits: Australian Gazette, Australasian films

Source: National Film and Sound Archive of Australia

Catalogue Reference: NFSA title:103805


People: Con Colleano

Location: Melbourne, Australia

Tags: peace bonds, circuses, animals, Con Colleano, Melbourne, fundraising

Subject: Peace Bonds, circus


Novelty banners adorn the animal cages: 'Buy Peace Loans. Take a big bite’ for the lion and 'Peace Bonds are the Best Investment. Hop into them' for the kangaroo. The locals seem to enjoy seeing the exotic zoo animals.

The Australian-born and world famous Con Colleano (1899–1973) was considered in his prime to be the greatest tightrope circus artist. Born in Lismore, NSW with an Aboriginal, Irish and West Indian background, Colleano adopted a Spanish toreador persona as part of his act.

From 1925 until the late 1930s Colleano toured with the largest circus in America, Ringling Bros & Barnum and Bailey Circus, promoted as ‘The Greatest Show on Earth’. Colleano was billed as ‘The Wizard of the Wire’ and was their principal star.