Henry Ringling North
Circus owner, manager
SWITZERLAND -- Henry Ringling North, 83, a former owner and manager of the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus, died Saturday in a hospital near his home in Begnins, after a long illness.
"The circus was the whole of his life," said Gloria de la Feld, who married Mr. North in 1959.
Mr. North was born in Chicago, the son of Henry and Ida Ringling North and a nephew of John Ringling -- one of the eight Ringling brothers who founded the circus. Ringling Bros. took over P. T. Barnum's Barnum & Bailey Circus in 1908.
Starting in 1936, Mr. North and his late brother, John, ran the circus for 31 years until it was sold to a group led by the late Hagerstown-born impresario, Irvin Feld.
Mr. North wrote "The Circus Kings: Our Ringling Family Story" in 1960, and continued as honorary vice president of the circus after selling it in 1967, his widow said.