George Harmon
1907 - 1944

Submitted by Marvin Beatty

George Harmon was the son of William Asa Harmon and Edna Hawhee, of French Lick. Born a drawf he became a circus performer and worked for Ed Ballard's Hagenbeck-Wallace circus among many including Ringling Brothers. As many may know during the 1920s West Baden/French Lick was one of the largest circus towns in the nation. Ed Ballard was the owner of the West Baden Springs Hotel from 1923 to 1934. A home town boy, Ed Ballard made his fortune operating some of the most successful casinos that were located in the county. One of his passions was circuses. To this end he at one time owned virtually every circus, with the exception of Ringling Brothers, in the nation. According to Ed's son Charles,

"My Father and two other men owned what was called the American Circus Company, which included the Sells-Floto Circus, the Hagenbeck-Wallace Circus and the John Robins Circus. They sold the American Circus Company to John Ringling in 1929 just four weeks before the Stock Market Crash. My Father and John Ringling tossed a coin to see which one would buy the other out. John Ringling won the toss and bought my father's American Circus Company. John Ringling went broke shortly after the Stock Market Crash."

From the History of the West Baden Springs Hotel

Ahnenfetal Report for George Harmon