An American showman P. T. Barnum - Promoter of 'freak shows' for all the family


By John Springhall, published 31st August 2007

Refer nowadays to Phineas Taylor Barnum (1810-91)—once among the most recognisable and talked about of all nineteenth century Americans— only to conjure up visions of Barnum & Bailey’s three-ring circuses, menageries, acrobats, and Jumbo the elephant. Such images tend to obscure that in 1880, on creation of the famous travelling circus combination, the renowned Connecticut-born showman was already over 70 years of age, even if long prominent as an impresario and...

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