Carl Hagenbeck's Animal Paradise was called the -"largest
representation of an animal paradise ever constructed."
The attraction was actually two attractions- One, Carl Hagenbeck's Circus, which included trained animals, death defying feats and clowns and other `circusy' goings on. The other half was a rather surprising wide open and natural animal sanctuary- quite different than the animals in small cages zoos that were common at this era
Carl Hagenbeck- known as the the `Animal King;' born June 10, 1844,
was a internationally known German animal dealer and trainer.
Hagenbeck trained and controlled animals by rewards-based animal
training as opposed to fear, showcasing their intelligence over ferocity.
He was the founder of open-air zoos.
Hagenbeck had an almost unlimited collection of animals that he could place
or parade on the pike to lure visitors into his attraction. Camel trains,
cages of monkeys and exotic birds, elephants, etc.
A 3,000 seat arena showcased bear, lion, seal, snake-handlers, and other
exotic animal shows.
Despite his kindness and love of animals, Hagenbeck had a fondness for the outrageous and bizarre. He bred and displayed one-of-a-kind animals such as the liger (cross between a lion and a tiger), and a zebra-horse.
Though sterile, these animals were healthy and apopular curiosity.
The most outrageous act in Hagenbeck's arsenal (and quite controversial by today's standards), was Chute-the-chutes. This show consisted of elephants slide down a huge chute
into a `pond' of water. The elephant toboggan slide was one of the most popular"stunts" in the jungle panorama of the Hagenbeck show on the Pike. at St. Louis. Front legs thrust
forward, the elephant slides down, throwing a huge blast of of water out-spraying the limits of the pool and cooling the crowd of spectators.
Supposedly, the elephants enjoyed the slide and water bath. Getting them out of the water was a tough job for the handlers.
The baby elephants which plunged down the slide were brought over from Hindostan by Lorenz Hagenbeck, the youngest son of Carl Hagenbeck.
Shooting-the-chutes was done in India by assembling elephants on the sloping mud banks of rivers.
Admission Cost: 50 cents adults and children
Additional Cost: 10 cents each to: monkey show,
bear show, reptile show and hybrid
show. And additional 10 cents for animal rides (tortoise, elephant, zebra, donkey, ostrich, camel or a llama).
Exhibition Profit- 339,001.90 dollars