Marcella AbbottX

Born: N/A

“It was a natural fit. I was heavy and the traveling circus needed a Fat Lady. I worked summers in the south and central lower peninsula of Michigan and stayed home here in Michigan when they all went south for the winter. This photo was the prize I handed out to anyone who could guess my weight. Marriage seemed not to be an option for me but when I met Mr. Ballou who worked as the midget in the circus my life changed. We married and had one child. It was a good life though I missed my husband during those long winters. It was always a joyous time when Spring came and the circus made its way north -- bringing Mr. Ballou back to me. Unfortunately, my spouse had some dark sides that I didn’t know about. One summer day he didn’t come home. I began to worry because it just wasn’t like him. We eventually put out the word among our own that he was missing. Of course, this was not reported to the authorities because we in the circus take care of our own. It was a very sad day when they found his body floating in the river. Seems the week’s receipts had disappeared the same day my husband did and folks in the circus surmised there was a connection. I guess they recovered the lost money. Well, if that connection were true then justice has been done. Makes me very very sad that he was gone as well as being a thief. I had a hard time picking up and continuing my life. The laudanum bottle tempted me mightily but I persevered for the sake of our daughter.” Jo Lorichon Aunt Teed is my great great great aunt on my Mother’s side. Dollar Bay, MI

Contributed by: Jo Lorichon, Dollar Bay, Michigan