George Lockhart Jr.

From the list of elephant persons Family: Lockhart

George Lockhart Jr.
George  Lockhart

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Personal details

Spouse(s) Rebecca Boswell

Country United Kingdom

Work locations
Title ringmaster 1928-1970
Location at Belle Vue Zoological Gardens in United Kingdom

Title ringmaster 1923-1924
Location at Bertram Mills Circus in United Kingdom

Title ringmaster 1914-1945
Location at Blackpool Tower Circus in United Kingdom

Title elephant trainer -1904
Location at George Lockhart Sr.s elephants in United Kingdom

Relevant literature
Biography details

George Claude Lockhart Jr., circus ringmaster in United Kingdom

Born 1885 in United Kingdom dead 1979 in United Kingdom , son of elephant trainer George Lockhart Sr. and assistant director Nannette Knights .

George Claude Lockhart (1885–1979) was the first ringmaster to wear the "pink" hunter tails and top hat, and was referred to in his World's Fair obituary as "The Doyen of Ringmasters". He was best known for being the ringmaster of the International Circus at Belle Vue, Manchester, England, and Blackpool Tower Circus.

When he was not at school, George spent a lot of his time with the elephants Boney, Molly and Waddy and toured all over Europe with them. His father sold his original troupe of elephants in 1901 and bought four more from the animal dealer Carl Hagenbeck. This Group would be known as "Lockhart's Cruet" and would become notorious for causing the death of George William Lockhart. The elephant Waddy apparently almost killed him when he and his father were transporting the act across Europe by train. According to George Claude Lockhart, they regularly stampeded and it was in one of these stampedes at Walthamstow station on 24 January 1904 that they killed their owner.

He was present when his father was killed during the stampede at Walthamstow station and was interviewed at the inquest. He saw the surviving members of this Group of elephants, Salt and Saucy, when they worked at Belle Vue in 1938. This reunion was remarked upon in the World's Fair newspaper. When he was seventy The Express newspaper reported that George Lockhart had his arm crushed by the elephant Burma whilst he was taking visitors around the circus stables. According to the report he continued presenting the circus throughout the second half before being admitted to hospital for his injuries.

The elephants were sold by his widow and George Claude Lockhart went to pursue a career not involving animals. He worked for George Hengler in Glasgow with his water productions undertaking various roles until 1914.

Lockhart was also famous for the various accounts he gave on his time spent with his father's elephants. According to a new book on his father's elephants, The Legend of Salt and Sauce by Jamie Clubb, much of George Lockhart's accounts on the elephants are romanticised versions of what actually happened, which alter in each progressive version.

George Claude Lockhart has been immortalised by having a road named after him. Lockhart Close was built by Wimpy Homes in 1987 on the former site of his beloved Belle Vue Zoo in Manchester. The small residential close is adjacent to Hoskins Close, named after Johnnie Hoskins and are both located off Ellen Wilkinson Crescent.


Siblings through the father George Lockhart Sr. (1849-1904-01-24):

  1. Louise Lockhart

George Lockhart Jr. s ancestral Ahnentafel:


George Lockhart Jr.
Born: 1885

George Lockhart

Born: 1849

Paternal Grandfather:
Samuel Lockhart

Paternal Great-grandfather:
Paternal Great-grandmother:
Paternal Grandmother:
Hanna Pinder

Born: about 1826
Paternal Great-grandfather::
William Pinder
Paternal Great-grandmother:
Elizabeth Clements

Nannette Knights

Born: abt. 1850

Maternal Grandfather:

Maternal Great-grandfather:
Maternal Great-grandmother:
Maternal Grandmother:
Ann Ginnett

Born: ?
Maternal Great-grandfather:
Jean Ginnett
Maternal Great-grandmother:
Ann Ginnett

Reference list


Koehl, Dan, (2023). ringmaster George Claude Lockhart Jr. in United Kingdom. Elephant Encyclopedia, available online retrieved 2 December 2023 at (archived at the Wayback machine)

Sources used for this article is among others:

Selected publications

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Categories ringmaster | circus | Belle Vue Zoological Gardens | Lockhart family | Born 1885 | Dead 1979 | People from United Kingdom

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