Struggles and Triumphs: Or, Forty Years' Recollections of P. T. Barnum (Google eBook)

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J.B. Burr, 1869 - Circus owners - 780 pages
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I have the first author's edition published by Warren Johnson and Co.,Buffalo, NY,1873. (Biography compete to April, 1872, the title page notes), apparently with some addenda by the author.
It
should come as no surprise that PT's autobiography shows him in a much more favorable light than, say, the current popular opinion, but for some good reasons. First, he comes from a family of pranksters and travelers and salesmen and showmen, so you see he was simply learning how to get on with them. His family members became his first marks, as he had been theirs, and a better student than they bargained for. Second, PT Barnum, unlike many successful people, revels in his failures, but without calling them that. A third remarkable thing is his ability to bargain, often with nothing. This means that people trusted him, and perhaps could not wait to see how he would do as he promised.
His story about procuring an entire city block in NYC for his American Museum, with no collateral, and competing with a large bank syndicate, is completely unique.
He did a lot with entertainment, and managed tours of 'The Swedish Nightingale.'
If not for some great insights into business, entertainment, and travel, you should read this book -- because P. T. Barnum in his own words is a real funny guy !
 

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Page 497 - There is that scattereth, and yet increaseth; and there is that withholdeth more than is meet, but it tendeth to poverty.
Page 475 - He that gathereth in summer is a wise son: but he that sleepeth in harvest is a son that causeth shame.
Page 36 - And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things : but one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.
Page 768 - Jock, when ye hae naething else to do, ye may be aye sticking in a tree ; it will be growing, Jock, when ye're sleeping.* My father tauld me sae forty years sin', but I ne'er fand time to mind him.
Page 65 - I was sentenced to pay a fine of one hundred dollars, and to be imprisoned for sixty days in the common jail.
Page 180 - General," continued the Queen, " this is the Prince of Wales." " How are you, Prince ? " said the General, shaking him by the hand ; and then, standing beside the Prince, he remarked , " The Prince is taller than I am, but I feel as big as anybody...
Page 295 - Jenny looked at me with astonishment. She could not comprehend my proposition. After I had repeated it, and she fully understood its import, she cordially grasped me by the hand, and exclaimed, "Mr. Barnum, you are a gentleman of honor: you are generous; it is just as Mr. Bates told me; I will sing for you as long as you please; I will sing for you in America in Europe anywhere...
Page 122 - go and lay a brick on the sidewalk at the corner of Broadway and Ann Street; another close by the Museum; a third diagonally across the way at the corner of Broadway and Vesey Street, by the Astor House; put down the fourth on the sidewalk in front of St. Paul's Church, opposite; then, with the fifth brick in hand, take up a rapid march from one point to the other, making the circuit, exchanging your brick at every point, and say nothing to anyone.' "'What is the object of this?' inquired the man....
Page 113 - Heath appeared, but said he must decline proceeding any farther in my case, as he had sold the collection to the directors of Peale's Museum (an incorporated institution), for $15,000, and had received $1,000 in advance. I was shocked, and appealed to Mr. Heath's honor. He said that he had signed no writing with me ; was in no way legally bound, and that it was his duty to do the best he could for the heirs. Mr. Olmsted was sorry, but could not help me ; the new tenants would not require him to incur...
Page 132 - something for nothing" they are sure to be cheated. Powerful Drummond lights were placed at the top of the Museum, which, in the darkest night, threw a flood of light up and down Broadway, from the Battery to Niblo's, that would enable one to read a newspaper in the street. These were the first Drummond lights ever seen in New York, and they made people...

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