Big Mary also known as Murderous Elephant was a circus elephant that was hanged to death.
A circus show reached the small town of Erwin. This show was majorly for promotional activity, which was held along the town main street.
During a parade in September 1916 on a railroad yard, A man known as Walter Eldridge age 38 with no real experience of handling elephants, was the rider on Big Mary during this circus.
The rule was that the rider or any rider would do just fine as long as he wielded the elephant stick rod which is used to train elephants.
During this parade, the elephant stopped by to chew on a watermelon it found. But the impatient rider jabbed the elephant time to time to get it moving.
Elephant known for his temper pulled the rider off her and trampled on his head. For Eldridge, that was the end.
Mob were so enraged that they volunteerd 100-ton crane to be used to hang her. it was reported that a chain was placed around her neck and as the crane hoisted her, the chain attached to her neck snapped under the strain which then dropped her on the ground breaking her hips.
But that wasn’t the end, A stronger chain was attached to her neck and she was lifted once again and left hanging for half an hour as she choked to death until a Veterinarian declared her dead.
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