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Hilton, Daisylocked

(05 February 1908?–04 January 1969)
  • Ann T. Keene

Extract

Hilton, Daisy (05 February 1908?–04 January 1969), and Violet Hilton (05 February 1908?–04 January 1969), conjoined twins and entertainers, were born to a barmaid in Brighton, England. Their parents' names are unknown. Accounts vary of the exact year of their birth as well as its circumstances and immediate aftermath, but it is generally believed that their mother, who was unwed, died when they were infants, and their father was reportedly killed during World War I. The twins, who were joined at the base of the spine, were raised by Mary Hilton, the midwife who delivered them. Early on Hilton recognized their earning potential as a circus and vaudeville act at a time when so-called freak shows that exploited human oddities were in their heyday. With Hilton acting as both agent and foster mother, the twins were exhibited at fairs, circuses, and street carnivals. To enhance their act, they were taught to dance and to play the saxophone and violin, and in the years before World War I they toured Germany and then Australia, where they remained for four years....

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