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'+textdescription+'') jkpopwin.document.close() jkpopwin.focus() } Jeanie Tomaini - The Half-Girl Berniece Evelyn "Jeanie" Smith was born in Blufton, Indiana on August 23, 1916. She was born without legs and both of her arms were twisted. She began performing at age 3, exhibited by her parents at fairs all over the country. Jeanie's act consisted mainly of acrobatic stunts such as handstands and cartwheels - although her hands were deformed, she was able to walk on them with ease. When Jeanie was 13, her mother died while Jeanie was appearing at a fair in Paris, Texas. Jeanie and her two brothers were placed in an orphanage, and she was adopted at age 15 by a woman named Lizzie Weeks who was psychologically abusive and kept Jeanie locked up between performances, lest anyone see her without paying for a ticket.

While performing on the sideshow circuit in the 1930s, Jeanie met Aurelio "Al" Tomaini, an 8-foot, 2-inch giant from Long Branch, New Jersey, born February 25, 1912. He was new to the carnival lifestyle and had a hard time fitting in. He and Jeanie became romantically involved and, while playing a fair in Cleveland, Ohio in 1936, the pair eloped and were married by a justice of the peace on September 8. They honeymooned at Niagara Falls.

Al and Jeanie discovered Gibsonton, Florida, a blossoming carnival community, while vacationing along the Alafia River in the 1930s. Al loved to fish, and the couple retired on a piece of property along the banks of the river in the 1940s. Now that they were no longer on the road, they were able to raise children and adopted two daughters. They established a lodge and fishing camp which was named "The Giant's Camp" by Frank Lentini, the three-legged man, a personal friend of the Tomainis. One of Al's enormous cowboy boots is nailed to a pedestal along US 41. Al, like many giants, suffered a number of health problems. Towards the end of his life, his legs were constantly hurting. On August 30, 1962, he passed away, aged 50.

Jeanie outlived Al and continued to run the Giant's Camp for many years, until her own death on August 10, 1999 - the anniversary of the adoption of her daughter, Judy "Rustie" Rock in 1946. She was 13 days shy of her 84th birthday and was buried on the anniversary of Al's death. The Tomaini family still live in Gibsonton. Jeanie's great-grandson Alexzander Morrow is now a sideshow performer known as the Junior Torture King.

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