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While there were many daredevil acts before Mrs Taylor’s bold accomplishment, none quite so renowned, for no one had previously endeavored to drive themselves over the falls. Though Carlisle Graham had announced a few months prior he would journey down Horseshoe Falls he did not go forth with his plans. Annie was strapped into a Kentucky oak barrel that was held together by seven steal rings and packed with padding, the barrel was 34 inches in diameter through the middle and four and a half feet long. The lid was screwed shut and Annie was towed out by a small boat to the mainstream and released at 4:05 pm, several news people were on hand, ready to deliver Annie’s fate to the world. The barrel streamed toward the Canadian side and over the Horseshoe Falls. Mrs Taylor was in the barrel for 17 minutes after her frightening tumble down Niagara Falls, until it was close enough to the Canadian shores to be hauled in. The top of the barrel was cut away. Annie emerged scratched and bruised, very stunned but satisfied, quoted to have said “No one ought ever do that again.” She did try to cash in on her accomplishment, for it is documented that it was one of her motives for such a precarious act, however she was far from victorious. In lieu of money, for 10 years she held the honor of being the only person to ever go over the falls. She died a pauper twenty years later, at the still disputed age of 83.
Not unlike Annie Taylor numerous people tried a variety of different stunts seeking fame and fortune for there dare devilish ways, many paying with their lives. One of the most notorious people to take to the tight rope was Jean Francois Gravelot or better known as “The Great Blondin”, he was branded as the most bold and entertaining daredevil of all time, he was infatuated with crossing over Niagara Falls.
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