Topsy: the startling story of the crooked-tailed elephant, P.T. Barnum, and the American wizard, Thomas Edison

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In 1903, on Coney Island, an elephant named Topsy was electrocuted, and over the past century, this bizarre, ghoulish execution has reverberated through popular culture with the whiff of urban legend. But it really happened, and many historical forces conspired to bring Topsy, Thomas Edison, and those 6600 volts of alternating current together that day. Tracing them all in Topsy The Startling Story of the Crooked Tailed Elephant, P.T. Barnum, and the American Wizard, Thomas Edison, journalist Michael Daly weaves together a fascinating popular history, the first book on this astonishing tale. At the turn of the century, the circus in America was at its apex with the circuses of P.T. Barnum and Adam Forepaugh (or 4-Paw) competing in a War of the Elephants, with declarations of whose pachyderms were younger, bigger, or more "sacred". This brought Topsy to America, fraudulently billed as the first native-born, and caught between the circus disputes and the War of the Currents, in which Edison and George Westinghouse (and Nikola Tesla) battled over alternating versus direct current. Rich in period Americana, and full of circus tidbits and larger than life characters--both human and elephant--Topsy is a touching tale and an entertaining read.
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ISBN:
9780802119049
9781624606342
9780802194572
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Grouped Work ID b87bc393-290c-a7db-7ee8-0ae2734f8f7f
Grouping Title topsy the startling story of the crooked tailed elephant p t barnum and the american wizard thomas e
Grouping Author daly michael
Grouping Category book
Last Grouping Update 2019-08-21 20:02:02PM
Last Indexed 2019-08-23 02:57:03AM

Solr Details

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auth_author2 Peckham, Mark.
author Daly, Michael, 1952-
author2-role Peckham, Mark.
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author_display Daly, Michael
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detailed_location_catalog Brighton - Adult Nonfiction
display_description In 1903, on Coney Island, an elephant named Topsy was electrocuted, and over the past century, this bizarre, ghoulish execution has reverberated through popular culture with the whiff of urban legend. But it really happened, and many historical forces conspired to bring Topsy, Thomas Edison, and those 6600 volts of alternating current together that day. Tracing them all in Topsy The Startling Story of the Crooked Tailed Elephant, P.T. Barnum, and the American Wizard, Thomas Edison, journalist Michael Daly weaves together a fascinating popular history, the first book on this astonishing tale. At the turn of the century, the circus in America was at its apex with the circuses of P.T. Barnum and Adam Forepaugh (or 4-Paw) competing in a War of the Elephants, with declarations of whose pachyderms were younger, bigger, or more "sacred". This brought Topsy to America, fraudulently billed as the first native-born, and caught between the circus disputes and the War of the Currents, in which Edison and George Westinghouse (and Nikola Tesla) battled over alternating versus direct current. Rich in period Americana, and full of circus tidbits and larger than life characters--both human and elephant--Topsy is a touching tale and an entertaining read.
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publishDate 2013
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Bib IdFormatFormat CategoryEditionLanguagePublisherPublication DatePhysical Description
ils:933503 Book Books First edition. English Atlantic Monthly Press, [2013] viii, 369 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
hoopla:MWT12212307 eBook eBook English Grove/Atlantic, Inc., 2013. 1 online resource
hoopla:MWT11397819 eAudiobook Audio Books Unabridged. English Blackstone Audio, Inc. / AudioGO , 2013. 1 online resource (1 audio file (11hr., 16 min.)) : digital.
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subject_facet Animals -- Social aspects -- United States
Barnum, P. T. -- (Phineas Taylor), -- 1810-1891
Capital punishment -- United States -- History
Captive elephants -- United States
Circus -- United States -- History
Circus animals
Circus owners -- United States -- Biography
Competition (Psychology)
Coney Island (New York, N.Y.) -- History
Edison, Thomas A. -- (Thomas Alva), -- 1847-1931
Electricity
Electrocution -- Experiments
Electrocution -- United States -- History
Electronic books
Elephants
Elephants -- United States
HISTORY / United States / 20th Century
Inventors -- United States -- Biography
Luna Park (New York, N.Y.) -- History
Scientists -- United States
Topsy (Elephant)
United States -- History -- 1901-1909
Westinghouse, George, -- 1846-1914
title_display Topsy : the startling story of the crooked-tailed elephant, P.T. Barnum, and the American wizard, Thomas Edison
title_full Topsy : the startling story of the crooked tailed elephant, p.t. barnum, and the american wizard, Thomas Edison [electronic resource] / Michael Daly
Topsy : the startling story of the crooked-tailed elephant, P.T. Barnum, and the American wizard, Thomas Edison / Michael Daly
Topsy : the startling story of the crooked-tailed elephant, P.T. Barnum, and the American wizard, Thomas Edison [electronic resource] / Michael Daly
title_short Topsy :
title_sub the startling story of the crooked-tailed elephant, P.T. Barnum, and the American wizard, Thomas Edison
topic_facet Animals
Barnum, P. T
Capital punishment
Captive elephants
Circus
Circus animals
Circus owners
Competition (Psychology)
Edison, Thomas A
Electricity
Electrocution
Electronic books
Elephants
Experiments
History
Inventors
Scientists
Social aspects
Topsy (Elephant)
Westinghouse, George