20 Unforgettable Vintage Photos of Real Circus Freaks & Sideshow Acts

With FX’s American Horror Story having entered its fourth season this week, which boasts conjoined twins, one extremely frightening clown and a bearded lady, we’ve, of course, had freak shows on our minds.

Just a few decades ago, freak shows were popular attractions at state fairs, carnivals and circuses — people were captivated by those that were different than them and forked over hard-earned cash to take a peek behind the curtain.

If you enjoy the off-beat, strange or straight up bizarre, you’ll definitely want to check out the slideshow above. It’s a look into a lost world, a part of American culture that still continues to ignite our curiosity.

Check out the clip below for this season’s American Horror Story trailer:

Images: Pinterest