Prince Nelson” was a local boy who “made good” . His name was Nelson Stevens and he grew up in the hamlet of ]oy. His boyhood home which has since burned stood just east of the residence owned and occupied by Carlton Hoot. Nelson appears to have been born with this acrobatic ability. When very small, he would do such stunts as walking his mother’s clothesline, standing on his head on it and climbing to the roof and doing a headstand on the chimney.
In the early 1900s, he became well known as “Prince Nelson” the dare devil tight rope walker.
Pictured above (photo courtesy of Bette Bugni), Prince Nelson is walking across a tightrope over the 4 corners in Sodus on booster day circa 1910. Booster days were an annual event set up to draw crowds and help the local merchants.
You can click on this link below to see the above image and zoom in using the + button on the lower right:
1910 Booster Days with Prince Nelson
Besides tight rope walking across main street on booster day in Sodus circa 1910, Prince Nelson also did other gigs. He walked across the Niagara gorge. Pictured below he also participated in the 1915 Festival for the Brooklyn-Brighton Bridge Opening .