Edmonds's, late Wombell's (sic),
Royal Windsor Castle Menagerie, has taken up convenient quarters at the
Agricultural Hall, in Westwell-street, Plymouth, where it will be on
full view for the next nine days.
A wild beast show has always been a
favoured exhibition with Plymouthians (sic), and therefore it
was not surprising that the thoroughfares were yesterday morning
thronged with crowds anxious to witness the entrance into the town, and
thronged too by persons who could afford to wait two or three hours for
the gratification of their curiosity.
In coming from Modbury yesterday
morning, the menagerie unaccountably missed the right road, and instead
of coming to Plymouth by way of Yealmpton, made a detour through
Plympton. In consequence of this its arrival in the town was delayed
for nearly three hours.
The procession entered the town by
way of South Devon-place, where a confused mass of thousands, including
nearly all the youthful scoundreldom of the town, were congregated to
meet it. The handsome band carriage, drawn by four graceful camels,
driven by Delmonico, the Arabian lion tamer, headed the procession, and
then followed a long string of massive caravans, drawn by from six to
eight powerful horses, which were in themselves a sight to see.
Down Jubilee-street the band carriage
was preceded by some two thousand small boys, and as the mass narrowed
in the limited width of Exeter-street and Briton-side the crush was
something to remember, and the wonder was that many were not pushed
under the wheels of the carriages. Relief was, however, found for the
crowd in the more roomy thoroughfare of Treville-street, and except at
the corners the mob suffered little during the perambulation of the
menagerie, which took its way through Old Towm, Bedford, Frankfort
streets, Stonehouse Lane, Fore Street, Stonehouse, and in through
Union-street to the Agricultural Hall.
An extra force of police was on duty
at the points where there were the largest crowds, and to them, in some
measure, is to be attributed the absence of accidents of any kind. Each
of the waggons was also well attended by Mr Edmonds's men (sic),
who took every precaution throughout the route.
Having perambulated the town, every
haste was made to get the caravans in order in the hall, but so large
was the establishment, and so anxious was the proprietor that the public
should not be admitted until everything was in proper order, that the
menagerie was not opened last evening at all. To-day, however, it will
open at noon and continue open until 9.30, when the feeding will take
The Agricultural Hall is well adapted
for such an exhibition, and the arrangements for ventilation, etc., are
such as to make the visit most pleasant. Although the exhibition has
not been regularly opened, enough has been seen of it to fully establish
its claim to be considered the A1 menagerie. It is a wild beast show of
most substantial attractions, since it includes the late King Theodore's
charger "Hammel", a large troupe of performing lions, the only tamed
group of hyenas in the world, a huge black or clouded tiger, a fine
specimen of the great bonassus, four camels, a waggon load of monkeys,
the umbrella elephants, and a host of other minor attractions.
Delmonico, the lion tamer, in his
performances with lions and leopards, with hyenas, and with a pair of
zebras, also forms a principal feature of attraction at the show.
Judging from the large crowd that assembled around the doors last
evening eager for admittance, there is little reason to doubt that it
will be patronised by large assemblies.