TH E SUMMER MICHIGAN DAILYWWEDNESDAY, JULY 20I, 1927l
. . .........
I BOOS OF THE DAY
Blarnum' s Owni Story, The Autobio- Irments, politics, fires, and a businessI
graphy of P. T. Barnum; 452, pages. failure at the age of forty-five that
The Viking Press. 1927. $3.00. was followed by a complete recovery."
Five times was the prince of humbugs
Tfhe showman himself speaks fort the victim of dire, ..and each time he
the greatest show on 'earth. And! rose from a blow that would have!
what is more, this volume remains silenced an ordinary, individual and,
one of the most amusing shows ever gained even greater, prominence. Per-
put between covers. One is reminded haps more interesting to the reader:
that it is works such as this thatt are the accounts of the' smaller en-
give a more thorough insight into the? terprises and disclosures,' including
foibles of America than a dozen legi- the famous "Fee-Jee Mermaid," Joice
timate histories. Barnum is as much; Heth, the venerable "nurse of ,Wash-
a part of our country as is Washing- ington," white, elephants, and the
ton, with qualitative virtus thrown to transplanting of several mammoth
the winds. As a literary characteriza-! whales overland to New York for
t ion the autobiography is not so much, exhibition in the museum at a great
but for firsthand enjoyment it is a, personal. loss to the curator. Any-
live- foot shelf. The present genera- thing that was curious or unheard of
tion has memories that are compara- I Barnum pounced upon and carried
tively undernourished in regard to; off to show the Yankee nation. Prob-
the Brideport wizard; he is remem- ably his greatest public service wasI
bered chiefly for one or two famous the importation of the "Swedish
remarks concerning the gullibility ofj Nightingale," Jenny Lind ,in 1850, and
the human race. There have beenI his subsequent tour with her as per-
others who have attempted to tell his sonal manager. Ini this enterprise he
story,, but unquestionably there is risked practically everything to a
none who could do it so aptly as the!; whim, and was rewarded with the re-
perpetrator. turn of a paltry $700,000 on his in-!
The language used is little more: vestment?!
than ballyhoo, and this grows tire-! It would be an impossible task to
some after a hundred pages or so. in give a few words to each of the ven-
fact the showman's bark is the most tures described in the autobiography,
vivid trait of the whole volume, it for one follows upon the heels of the
seems to have been dictated from a, other, and. often overlaps. It is in-
pla tform in front of a tent. Through- credible that one man could have ac-I
out the whole Barnum seems to be! complished so much-and in such a
making a visible effort to convince !mranner. I
his readers that he did have a family Much of* the blurb and self-praiseI
life, a private side that has hitherto that-was contained in earlier editions
been concealed, but he cannot resistI has been cut, so 'the publisher" in-I
the sweep of his enterprises as they forms us, but it still fairly drips
,come up in chronological order, and i from the pages. Barnum is certainly
once he strikes Tom 'Thumb or Jenny to be admired, but in the same way
Lind he is off agL i~ and the poor! that i. a p~aa c2.-U-jumper or sword
fam-ily is forgotten, swallover--from a distance. He
Contrary to the general belief, the ; wo.uld hardly be considered a fit
circus as we know it played but a! match for a modern girl. His in-
small part in the complete record, iti tended humorous anecdotes have a
was rather the culmination of a busy! tw uig of mothballs and hoop-skirts,
life. Before tha.t there was the Arne- 1 and 'his righteousness is too well-
rican Museum, the innumerable exhi oiled to be convincing. But the flat
bitions, the stupendous manage- taste of these qualities is easily over -
I LAST TERES TODAY.
come by the exploits themselves. Toj
ar student of America, the autobio-
graphy is indispensable, it is a text-1
book Americana, and the glorification
is no where better expressed than in
"To The Universal Yankee Nation, of
which I ant proud to be one, I.
dedicate these pages-P. T.
-K. G~. P.
BOSTON.-A supervisor of nutrition
classes has been appointed in the
school department of the city of Bos-
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A riot of fun and
ON THE STIAGE
"The Prince of ,ft-sters"
Eddie Green at the Piano
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The Wad To Co To
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Last Time TOMORROW at 8:15 (No Performance Tonight)
Love and barnyard adventure--All the ingrediants of a perfect farce !
Opening Friday-" Fanny's First Play"