From the mid-19th century to the mid-20th century, the Freak Show was particularly popular in Europe and North America.
In the USA, the circus of Phineas Barnum was best known, but in addition to it, there were dozens of smaller groups.
They traveled to towns and villages and for money showed bearded women, Siamese twins, dwarfs, "living skeletons" and other people with unusual physical disabilities.
The vast majority of these people were rejected by society and outside the circus arena were ridiculed, persecuted, and even attacked with trauma. Many of them lived out their days in poverty as their freak careers ended.
There were many very unusual deformities among them, but even among this audience stood out the so-called "half-man-half-woman" by the name of Bobby Cork. Very little is known about his physical anomaly, even a few photos of him have survived, but according to official information, he had an extremely rare transgender deformity of the body - half of his body was physically developed as a woman, and the other half as a man.
It is not known where Bobby was born and no one knows how he died, but one thing is clear, he began working in 1940 in small New York theaters with a number called "Robert and Robert".
True, he did not have much success. The fact is that at that time many actors performed with similar numbers, dressing up in a woman's and men's costume and creating a bright and musical theatrical performance out of their performance. At the same time, with their bodies, most often everything was in order, they were not real transvestites and only played in the image.
For Bobby, it was exactly the opposite, he was not a particularly bright actor, but his body was a real rarity. The audience basically needed a bright show.
Bobby had to leave theaters and for the next three years he wandered here and there, earning on his body as best he could. More often than not, he simply allowed himself to be photographed naked for money.
Only thanks to these pictures can you clearly see that even Bobby's body muscles were different in different halves - one had strong sinewy muscles, the other was smoother and with softer curves.
In the mid-40s, Bobby Cork joined the troupe of itinerant "freaks" and began to travel with them around the country, showing himself to the public. And the audience was very different. His body attracted both ordinary curious people and people with various mental obsessions. They paid Bobby money to dance in front of them, allow himself to be abused, and do all kinds of obscene things.
Moreover, Bobby had not just male and female halves of the body, he had both male and female genitals at the same time, and in working order, which is very rare even among hermaphrodites.
On the female side of the body, his chest was well developed. In later years, many tried to prove that Bobby Cork was a fraud and that his female breasts were not real, but Cork's contemporaries assured that everything was the most natural for him.
In the early 50s, when people who survived the war craved a variety of entertainment, albeit not the most decent ones, Cork was lucky to earn a certain amount of money, which allowed him to finally leave the circus and find another job.
He decided to become a photographer, and he worked mainly with other sexual "freaks" - gays and transvestites, whom the society rejected in those years no less than in the 19th century. In this field, Cork gained some fame, and several of his photographs even got into the newspapers, but alas, this fame ultimately ruined him.
In 1954, a small note leaked in the newspapers that Bobby Cork had died from food poisoning in a New York City cafe. According to rumors, the poison was mixed in his food by local representatives of the Ku Klux Klan, whom Bobby crossed the road long ago, because he was photographing black guys.