- A famous American showman -
( 1810 - 1891 )
|* List of the stories
he appears in :
- D 96089 : "The Vigilante of Pizen Bluff" (Lo$ #6b), from 1996, by Don Rosa ;
- D 98202 : "The Dutchman's Secret", from 199, by Don Rosa (by name only).
* His biography :
Phineas Taylor Barnum was born in Bethel, Connecticut, on July 5, 1810.
He first started as a store-keeper, and was also concerned in the lottery mania then prevailing in the United States. He married in 1829 with a woman called Charity.
Incurably megalomaniac and outrageously imaginative, he turned fraud into an art to attract the attention of the public (he used to call himself "The Humbug Prince"). Since 1835, when he started his career as a showman, with Joice Heth whom he paid paid 1 000 $, a colored woman who claimed to be 161 years old and the nurse of George Washington (she was in fact about eighty years less), he exhibited a lot of nature oddities in his circus and museums, in the US and in Europe, such as the Fiji Mermaid, "General Tom Thumb", and the Siamese twins, Chang and Eng, Jumbo the largest elephant ever known,...
Barnum's first, wife, Charity, died in 1873 while Barnum was in Hamburg, Germany. The next year he married a long time friend from England, Nancy Fish.
In 1887 Barnum and Bailey developed the 3 Ring Show, such a large circus that it took 90 railroad cars to move the whole circus, and this circus played in 175 cities in that year. In 1889 Barnum and Bailey took their circus to London for the summer and in 1890 they were back in the U.S.A. traveling across the land.
He died on the 7th of April 1891.
* His place in the Barks/Rosa stories universe
First, in "The Vigilante of Pizen Bluff", which takes place in 1890, he presents a "Wild West" show along with Buffalo Bill, Annie Oakley, Geronimo, Angus "Pothole" McDuck (Scrooge's Uncle), to celebrate the choice of Phoenix as a capital, and this whole bunch pursue, fight and catch the Dalton brothers, who had stolen Phineas' money. In this story are seen on the wall of Barnum's office pictures of the Siamese Twins, and of Jumbo, the giant African Elephant Barnum bought to a circus in England in 1882 and who died on September 15, 1885, crossing railroad tracks in St. Thomas, Ontario. The name of Jumbo is also evocated when Buffalo Bill thinks Scrooge should ask Banrum to hire him, and tells him that he would be a bigger star than Jumbo the Elephant himself. Fortunately for Don Rosa, Barnum could have been in Arizona in 1890, as he actually was vacationing somewhere in the west that year.
Then, he appears by name "The
Dutchman's Secret", on the poster the Dutchman
gave to Scrooge.
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