Preserving The Carousels
The Illions Supreme Carousel Restoration Project
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The City of Naples Looks to Bring Historic 1914 PTC 28 Carousel Home To The State of Florida In New Baker Park
As part of a major city park redevelopment project, the City of Naples looks to include a beautifully restored, antique “Golden Age” American carousel. The 1914 Philadelphia Toboggan Company, PTC #28 carousel was last at home in Florida, having worked much of its operational life for the historic James E. Strates Shows out of Taft, Florida. We have take note of how restoring the most beautiful carousels in America – keeping the artisans creations alive has such an impact historically.
The Philadelphia Toboggan Company built more than 70 hand-carved and crafted carousels, many still the prized possessions of major amusement parks and city parks alike. PTC only build 8 wagon mounted center pole machines that could be used as portables.Only three portable PTC carousels are known to remain, and currently only one together and operating.
In the early 1950s, the historic Strates Shows were spending winters at a fairground in Deland, FL. In 1955, Strates purchase a 40-acre lot in Taft, Florda, just south of Orlando. Over a mile of railroad siding was built in the lot to accommodate the massive railroad carnival.
Today, the historic Strates Shows still winters on the same spot in Taft, FL, and they are America’s only remaining railroad carnival. It was only the best for the huge James E. Strates Shows railroad carnival, traveling up and down the East coast throughout the 20th century.
The Strates Shows owned at least two wagon-mount PTC carousels, #28 and another thought to be PTC #40, donated to the Circus World Museum
History of PTC # 28:
Traveling carnival machine, first owned by the Nagata Brothers and leased to carnival owners.
Traveled with Beckman and Gerety Shows.
Traveled with the world famous James E. Strates
The World Famous Royal American Shows, 1886-1977, who claimed “The World’s Largest Midway”, owned and operated at three PTC wagon-mount portables.
Royal American Shows owned at least three portable Philadelphia Toboggan Company Carousels; PTC #23, PTC #27 and PTC #34.
Jane’s Carousel is restored historic Carousel made by the Philadelphia Toboggan Company in 1922. It’s a classic 3-row machine with 48 exquisitely carved horses, and 2 superb chariots. The wood carvings, often attributed to John Zalar and Frank Carretta, are among the finest of their kind. It was the first Carousel to be placed on the National Register of Historic Places.