March 4, 2009

The Freak Show Exhibit - Leavenworth, KS

I love freak shows! As a tattooed, pierced woman who used to have purple hair - I'm sure this not surprising in the slightest. So I was super excited to see the historical freak show exhibit at the C.W. Parker Carousel Museum. It includes pictures of some of the "freaks" - from giants, to a crab handed boy, to a woman swallowing swords. There are also artifacts from the tents - a horrifying little petrified mermaid (seriously, this thing looked more like Gollum with fangs than Ariel), a mummified toad, and a two-headed chick. It was deformed but still so cute and fuzzy! If it wasn't taxidermy I would totally cuddle it. Oh, who am I kidding? I still wanted to cuddle it!

One thing that caught my eye was the display case of shrunken heads. I really want to know how they were made. Call it morbid curiosity but I really badly want to know what they are made of (assuming of course they are not real heads). When I was a kid, my mom showed me how to make a fake shrunken head with an apple. These were obviously not the crude, fruit skulls of my youth. So if anyone knows how to make a shrunken head - please let me know!

Finally, there was an animal hidden behind a sheet in a glass case. The sign posted in front of it said, "Obscene animal. For adults only." I thought about it for a moment and decided I am an adult (legally anyway, I don't know about mentally). I lifted up the sheet and took a peek. Yep, the animal was obscene. But I'm not going to tell you what it was! You have to go to Leavenworth to find out for yourself!


  1. You take out the skull, and then sew it shut, and boil it. Fun stuff. No fruit here.

  2. "it" being the remaining skin. Damn indefinite pronouns.

  3. Why am I not surprised that Wikipedia has an explanation for making shrunken heads? I bet if I look hard enough I can find a YouTube demonstration video.

  4. Nice site..