A New York Times article on Buster Keaton from about 1945-46 when he was a gagman at MGM for folks like Red Skelton. Of particular interest is the 2nd to last paragraph where he is asked who he thought were the outstanding stage comedians of all time. He lists Marceline Orbes, Slivers Oakley and Fred Stone.
In his autobiography he singles out Poodles Hanneford as the absolute best comedy acrobat he ever saw.
Remember, Buster grew up in show business and worked with and watched EVERYBODY!
High praise for the clowns and their craft from the undisputed master of physical and visual comedy.