In this updated edition, the extraordinary life of Stoney St. Clair--circus performer turned tattoo artist, a true American icon--comes to life in his own words, photos, and tattoo flash. Born Leonard St. Clair in 1912 in West Virginia, Stoney discovered his passion for drawing at Johns Hopkins, where he was being treated for rheumatoid arthritis that would require him to use a wheelchair the rest of his life. Unfazed by his illness, he joined the circus at 15 as a sword swallower and then learned tattooing from other circus performers. From traveling with the circus to setting up tattoo shops in Tampa and Columbus, Stoney met, worked with, and tattooed a wild, nearly folkloric cast of characters. Alan Govenar--a folklorist himself, as well as a historian and filmmaker--faithfully documents Stoney's many stories as they were told to him, through Stoney's own cheery, wry, charming voice.