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The Great Show

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"The greatest Show on Earth" hu come to Ann Arbor and gone from it. It has taken the ducats but it has left us much to think of and to talk about. From the eaily dawu until after midnight there was a hurry, .1 rusli, a tramping of many feet and the rtunble of many heavily laden wagons. The three Ion? trains of cars belonging to the Consolidation arrived from Lansing about three o'clock and curiosity to see tiie System of unloading drew many sleepy heads from downy pillows. First came the train of llat-ears loaded with the wagons. They were quickly taken off, and in the meantime the cars containing the draught horses had been opened, the teams hitched together ready at once to be connected to the wagons and driven to the Fair grounds where the tents were soon in process of elevation. Of the large force there at work every man had his particular work and knew the particular moment in which to execute it. There was no confusión, but on the contrary all tended towards perfect order and speed of moveoient. To see the 300 heavy diaught horses was a sight seldom seen of London stables. They seemed to be the piek of the country. The second train brought the elephante, and immediately upon its stopping, the large cars were surrounded by a crowd anxious to see Jumbo. Uis car could easily be distinguished because it was the largest. It liad sides slightly sloping, coming down to within a few inches of the rails and extending as far above the cars as was consistent with safety in going under bridges. The old fellow was quickly brought out and taken up to the Fair grounds, leaving the others to come in the procession. The procession was formed promptly and paraded the principal streets with its droves of camels, elepljants, caged animáis and trained horses. Nearly all the people of the county had been hurrying into town from the earliest hour of daylight, and by ten a. m., it was difficult for one to make his way along the sidewalks or through the business streets. The blushing country darnsel chawin' gum had hold of the manly hand of her happy "feller, chawin' terbacker." Old pater-familias was strolling along with his wife and six children all hold of each other's hands, linked together like sausages, The giddy city girl giggied at the clown and the freshie prowled around with saucer-like opties and tunnel-like gullet. Even the blasé Prof. had business down town and sauntered along with nonchalent air but watchful eye. Old men and maidens; young men and matrons; married folks and children, were all on the quivive. After dinner the human tide turned wards the huge tents on the Fair grounds to visit first the menagerie, or perchance the side show, then the circus. The good natured mass of meat, bone and hide called Jumbo, held liis regal reception and put under cover untold quantities of peanuts, cookies and candy. On his back was a howdah alwavs full of children. Standing by himself one could get used to his height, but it was only when he was near some of the ordinary-sized elephants that the comparison showed his real immensity. He is only 22 years old and is kind and gentle, ajthough while in England he had shown some viciousness. His tusks had been broken off short before he came to this country, so they have grown four or five inches in the year he has been this side the water. During that tiine also, he has not honored American soil by lying down upon it. He alwaya sleeps leanlng against the side of the car which was made on purpose for hiin. lic likes everything from pea nuts to tobáceo and whisky, but these latter delicacies he is seldom treated to. The rest of the menagerie has many euriosities, such as the unusually tall giraffes, the baby seal only two weeks old, the huge hippopotamus, the savages and all the other animáis eommonly seen in menageries or zoologica! gardens. Upon entering the spacious ampitlieatre in the afternoon it was found that nearly every seat had an occupant. Before and during the performance the playing of the band attracted the attention of tlie most casual observer. It was so even and finished in its execution of the airs rendered. With the two rings and the platform the attention for the two hours was kept pretty tolerably busy. The circus bareback ridlng was not very remarkable but the daring riding in the hippodroine races more than made up for the deliciency. This novel feature was indeed thnlling and made a good final piece to the show. The features most talked of are Einma Jutta's 300 feet slidedown a wire,suspended by her teeth; the bicycle and unicycle acts; the performance on the wire by the Venezuelan and the droves of trained elephants and horses. The side-show was well patronized and for once was worthy of it asit had so many objects of interest. By the courtesy of Mr. D. S. Thomas, the genial press-agent of the Barnum London (JonsoliclaMon, the representatives of the press were conducted abo'ut and shown the inside workings of the vast enterprise. AU was order, neatness, quiet and prornptness. Ladies accompanied the party and met with nothing to offend anywhere. It was truly a big show.


Ann Arbor Courier
Old News