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Original 1885 Death Of Jumbo Circus Elephant P. T. Barnum Newspaper Article
Item #9779
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This item is already soldOriginal 1885 Death Of Jumbo Circus Elephant P. T. Barnum Newspaper Article
Death   Jumbo   Circus   Elephant   P. T. Barnum   Newspaper   Article   Historic
The picture shows a view of this Original 1885 Death Of Jumbo Circus Elephant P. T. Barnum Newspaper Article. This article was found in an 1800s scrap book. It is still pasted on the scrapbook page with another article and a note at the bottom. The article is dated September 17th, 1885, two days after Jumbo was hit and killed by a train. The title and subtitles read as follows:





The other smaller article on the page is about an 1887 fire in Wolfboro, New Hampshire. The title and subtitles of that one reads as follows:



LOSS $140,000.

There are more articles on the back. To judge the sizes the the two column Jumbo article measures 11'' tall. The page is in very good condition with some soiling as pictured.

For reference ''The Real Story of Jumbo'' that was found online was added below here:

''Extraordinary size had always been a basic Barnum staple; he was drawn to the very little and the very big. No wonder the circus showman so coveted Jumbo the elephant, the largest creature in captivity. The trouble was, the English had him.''

''Back in 1861, a baby elephant had been captured in the African jungles, taken to Cairo, and sold to a Paris zoo, from which it was eventually acquired by the Royal Zoological Gardens in London, swapped for a rhino. Named Jumbo by its new owners, after an African word for "elephant," the once puny creature was nursed and coddled by Matthew Scott, his keeper, as he grew over the years to the heroic size of 11 1/2 feet in height and 6 1/2 tons in weight. In almost two decades of service to the crown, the internationally famous Jumbo had carried hundreds of thousands of children as they flocked to the London zoo for rides.''

''From across the Atlantic, Barnum greedily eyed the colossal pachyderm, "but with no hope of ever getting possession of him." Nevertheless, he made an offer to the London Zoological Society of $10,000, and not long afterward what had been the impossible suddenly became a distinct possibility. Jumbo had thrown some uncharacteristic temper tantrums in his zoo quarters, and in 1881, fearful that it might have a potential danger on its hands, the society decided to accept Barnum's offer. Back home, the delighted showman realized he couldn't just pack up his acquisition and sail away. An international tableau had to be created first, by means of a bit of cunning, double-barrel brainwashing. In order to prove to Americans what a prize was coming their way, he set about convincing the English that they were being tricked out of a national treasure. Once the seeds of discontent were planted, loyal Britishers, from the man in the street to the Prince of Wales, were duly outraged. Like Lindmania three decades earlier, "Jumbo-mania" now swept across both countries. Jumbo souvenirs appeared by the thousands, and caricatures of Jumbo's imminent departure and projected arrival in the U.S. flooded publications. Songs and poems illuminated the controversy, and manufacturers attached Barnum's name to their products, no matter how far-fetched the connection. Letters from England poured in to the showman, begging him to reconsider. No, Barnum would not change his mind. A deal was a deal. After all, Jumbo wasn't a born British citizen. American children deserved him, too. Now, with protest and excitement seething, an enormous, rolling, padded, boxlike cage was built of oak and iron in which the continental switch was to be made. But, try as they might, Barnum's agents were unable to persuade Jumbo to step inside. "Jumbo is lying in the garden and will not stir. "What shall we do?" they wired home. Barnum's answer was to "let him lie there a week if he wants to. It is the best advertisement in the world."''

''Huge sums were now offered Barnum to relent, Parliament and the Queen practically begged, lawsuits were brought against the society's officers for making the sale, and Barnum's agent was threatened with imprisonment if any force at all was employed in Jumbo's removal. The showman stood firm. He cabled the London Daily Telegraph, which had asked him to name his price: "Hundred thousand pounds would be no inducement to cancel purchase." Excitement mounted in the U.S. as daily accounts of Jumbo's sit-down strike filled the papers. Finally, a resolution was hit upon. The keeper, Scott, who had uncanny influence over his charge, agreed to accompany the elephant to America. It worked. With Scott now leading the way, Jumbo willingly stepped into the six-ton box, and Barnum could write, "Jumbo [is] mine." It took 16 horses to move the cage, and "thousands followed," Scott remembered; "the grief of the children was really sorrowful:" After the huge 13-ton cargo had been swung on board the Assyrian Monarch, the oversized passenger munched on fruit and bonbons while a goodbye dinner was held on the ship, attended by grieving lords and ladies. The cost of shipping Jumbo to the U.S. was $1,000, but Barnum had to pay for the 50 tons of freight the elephant displaced as well, plus steerage passage for 200 emigrants who normally would have been on board.''

''Not even Barnum knew quite what he had. America's most visible ambassador was loudly praised for taking on the British and winning, as now thousands of New Yorkers met the ship on April 9, 1882, and followed the procession through packed and cheering streets to the Hippodrome building now named Madison Square Garden where the circus was about to open. Barnum claimed the elephant had cost him $30,000 in all, but that sum would prove to be nothing beside the earning power Jumbo proceeded to demonstrate. In his first three weeks, he pulled in $3,000 a day, covering more than his entire cost. For the years ahead, astronomical receipts were credited to his presence, as Jumbo, riding in his special private car from site to site, became the most famous animal in the world in fact, the most celebrated in history. Billed as "The Towering Monarch of His Mighty Race, Whose Like the World Will Never See Again," Jumbo never showed in America the temper that had cost him his British citizenship. Instead, he seemed to thrive on circus life, especially enjoying the bottle of beer Scotty shared with him at bedtime, a fact that led Barnum to consider merchandising a special Jumbo-shaped mug of beer. His very name soon became part of the language?the word "jumbo" being used from then on for something of true hugeness.''

''Always the businessman first, Barnum was forever aware of what the future might bring, and wished to be prepared. Henry A. Ward in Rochester had become his semi-official taxidermist for rare birds and animals that had died on the job, and in the summer of 1883 Ward requested, for the recognition it would bring him, that he be the one to stuff Jumbo, if and when that sad need occurred. Barnum assented: "I shall have my managers understand that if we lose Jumbo (which Heaven forbid!) you must be telegraphed to immediately, & hope you will lose no time in saving his skin and skeleton." Heaven Forbid, the awful day arrived only two years later.''

''On the night of September 15, 1885, the Greatest Show on Earth was playing the town of St. Thomas, Ontario. Twenty-nine elephants had already finished their routines and had been led down the railroad tracks to their waiting cars. Only the smallest, named after Tom Thumb, and the largest, Jumbo, remained to close the show. As keeper Matthew Scott finally guided the two mismatched performers along the tracks, he heard a whistle. The unscheduled express train hit Tom Thumb first, scooping him up on its cowcatcher and knocking him dawn a steep embankment, breaking his leg. Not willing to attempt the embankment and hemmed in by the circus train on the other side, the fleeing Jumbo was hit from the rear. The locomotive was derailed but Jumbo was crushed, his skull broken in over a hundred places. Still conscious and groaning, the dying elephant was comforted in his final moments by Scott. It took 160 men to drag the immense body to the edge of the embankment and roll it down. Overcome, Scott lay down upon his old friend and lapsed into a deep sleep while souvenir hunters approached with their knives.''

''Barnum was taking breakfast at the Murray Hill Hotel in New York when the news was brought to him. "The loss is tremendous," he gasped, then quickly remembered his standard role in tragedies and continued, "but such a trifle never disturbs my nerves." It took two days for the Rochester-based taxidermist Henry Ward to arrive on the scene. After measuring every last detail of the animal, he and six local butchers fought through the heavy fat and the thick odor to recover the 1,538-pound hide and 2,400 pounds of bone, for Barnum was determined to have two Jumbos to replace the flesh-and-blood model, one made of skin, the other a skeleton. When Barnum heard that the hide could be stretched to make an even bigger beast than Jumbo had been, he wrote Ward, "By all means let that show as large as possible. Let him show like a mountain." Fearful that his gruesome display would not be ready for the next season, Barnum warned Ward of the March 1, 1886, deadline stipulated in their contract. "We must have both Jumbos complete and as strong as thunder," he emphasized. Now the showman set out to kindle public interest in his "Double-Jumbo." Barnum's version of Jumbo's death was bound to help. As the locomotive bore down, Jumbo had "snatched the little elephant from in front of the thundering train and hurled the little fellow twenty yards to safety." Then "the mountain of bone and brawn," in Barnum's terminology, took on "the leviathan of the rail" in a terrifying clash as Jumbo met death "with a becoming dignity and fortitude."''

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Original 1885 Death Of Jumbo Circus Elephant P. T. Barnum Newspaper Article

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