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Barnum was 60 years old when PT Barnums Grand Traveling Museum Menagerie Caravan and Circus made its debut At the time it was the largest circus venture in American history We ought to have a big show Barnum said The public expects it and will appreciate it Appreciate it they did Barnum grossed 400000 in his first year of operation By 1872 Barnum was already referring to his enterprise as THE GREATEST SHOW ON EARTH -- and it was PT Barnums Traveling Worlds Fair Great Roman Hippodrome and Greatest Show On Earth covered five acres and accommodated 10000 seated patrons at a time and to reach more people took to the rails In 1881 Barnum joined promotional forces with James A Bailey and James L Hutchinson The result was PT Barnums Greatest Show On Earth And The Great London Circus Sangers Royal British Menagerie and The Grand International Allied Shows United It soon became known as the Barnum London Circus One of Barnums biggest successes -- literally -- came in 1882 with his acquisition of Jumbo Dubbed The Towering Monarch of His Mighty Race Whose Like the World Will Never See Again Jumbo arrived in New York on April 9 1882 and attracted enormous crowds on his way to his name becoming a part of the language In 1883 one of Barnums greatest promotional coups was staged as Barnum walked Jumbo across the Brooklyn Bridge to test the strength of the new engineering marvel Barnum and Bailey went their separate ways in 1885 but rekindled their business relationship once again in 1888 That year the Barnum Bailey Greatest Show On Earth first toured America Several weeks before he died in his sleep on April 7 1891 Barnum read his own obituary The New York Sun newspaper responding to Barnums comment that the press says nice things about people after they die ran his obituary on the front page
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