Well, Barnum and Bailey Circus is shutting down. Everything has its day. Opera and theater used to be for everyone. Now they are kept alive by elite life support. But the end of the circus is a little sad for anyone who remembers the sheer magic of being taken to the big top as a child. But even though his circus is sliding into history, Phineas Taylor Barnum will never be forgotten because about 20 years before founding his eponymous circus he promoted Elisha Otis’ elevator at the 1853 New York World’s Fair. Up till then nobody was interested in the frightening contraption. P T Barnum helped prove it safe and within only a few years buildings were being built four times higher than the 3 or 4 stories considered practicable up till then. It may be Otis’ name on the elevator you rode in yesterday but it was P T Barnum that made it possible for you to ride in it. Aren’t humans great? And isn’t He who created us, great?
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