Toug-Toulog (Toung-Taloung, Buddha) at P. T. Barnum

 Asian elephant Toug-Toulog (Toung-Taloung, Buddha) at P. T. Barnum

Drawing of Toung Taloung from the Scientific American, Supplement, New York, March 8, 1884, after the London Graphic, done while the animal was at Regents Park. Richard Reynolds
EEP Number: 843 -  Toug-Toulog (Toung-Taloung, Buddha)
Species: Asian elephant
Sex and age:, unknown years
Dead date: 1887-11-20
Death reason: accident: in a fire at Bridgeport , CT. winter quarters
Location:P. T. Barnum
ArrivedP. T. Barnum 1885-00-00
from Barnum and London Circus
Barnum and London Circus 1884-03-16
from London Zoo
London Zoo 1884-01-20
from J. G. Gaylord
J. G. Gaylord
from King Thibaw Min of Burmah
Born: Myanmar
Records about Toug-Toulog (Toung-Taloung, Buddha) from EEPEuropean Studbook for Asian elephants state following records for the asian elephant Toug-Toulog (Toung-Taloung, Buddha):

843 F ???? UNK UNK PUBLIC ~ Jan 1884 NONE Transfer TOUNG TALO
LONDON RP 18 Mar 1884 974 Loan to
PUBLIC ~ Dec 1884 NONE ltf Transfer

Source: EEP studbook for Asian elephants online


1884: He (Barnum) sent an agent, J. B. Gaylord, to Siam, with orders to buy or hire from the King, one of these creatures. The Siamese court met the proposition with an indignant refusal. Nothing daunted, Mr. Gaylord heard of a white elephant owned by a Siamese nobleman. He agreed to pay 100,000 dollars for it. It was smuggled down to Moulmein (Mawlamyaing), Burma (Myanmar), but, when on the point of being being transshipped to Singapore, it died of poison intentionally administered by some unknown person. Nil desperandum is Mr. Barnuns motto. He now offered 200,000 dollars for a sacred white elephant. This aroused the zeal of hundreds of active fortune hunters, and at length, after months of diplomacy and bribery, a sacred white elephant was purchased from King Theebaw of Burmah, the royal documents which record the transaction setting fort its genuineness. This creature is seven feet six inches high, and of a piebald color. His face, ears, the front of his trunk, and his front feet, and part of his breast are of a pinkish flesh color; the rest of his body is of light ashen hue. He arrived at Liverpool last seek by the steamship Tenasserim, and was at once taken on a special car, by the London and North-Western Railway Company, to the Zoological Gardens in the Regents Park. In his own country this elephant was called Toung Taloung, a name which the sailors on board the Tenesserim modified, after their custom, into "Old Tounge." As regards the adjective this is misnomer, the new comer, being only fifteen years old, is still in his boyhood. He has been re christened Buddah. His tusks are are remarkably fine. At the Zoological Gardens he occupies the apartment formerly tenanted by the much lamented Jumbo. who went last year (actually 1882) to push his fortunes in the New World. The house in question has been done up for his reception, and the walls and pilasters in front of the stall have been draped in green baize. On Saturday and Sunday last Buddha held grand receptions, and, despite the season of the year, the Zoo was crowded . Much interest was felt in Buddhas mahout, Radum Raddi, a half-breed Burmese, from the neighborhood of Mandalay. He was dressed in full national costume, and the contrast between the white of his dress and his dark, flowing hair was most picturesque. People were undeniably disappointed in Buddhas color. They had hoped to see a creature looking as Jumbo might look, supposing him to have previously tumbled into a gigantic flour bin. -Why do they call him white? asked a puzzled lady. -Well maam, was the reply, hes not werry white, perhaps, but then you see hes werry sacred
Scientific American, Supplement, New York, March 8, 1884

Toung Taloung, the famous white elephant, which I brought from Burmah (sic), cost me $200,000. Like the public, I was greatly disappointed in him. He was as genuine a white elephant as ever existed, but, in fact, there was never such an animal known. The white spots are simply diseased blotches. My white elephant was burned to death at Bridgeport in November, 1887, and I cant say that I grieved much over his loss.
P.T. Barnum, The Wild Beasts, Birds And Reptiles Of The World: The Story Of Their Capture


"Toug-Toulog" the sacred white elephant was imported to the Barnum & London Show in 1884 and thus began the famous White Elephant War between Barnum and his rival Adam Forepaugh who simply painted an elephant white. Since Albino elephants are actually somewhat gray in color, Barnums elephant was something of a disappointment whereas Forepaughs (John) was as white as the driven snow, leading to charges and counter charges of fakery. Three years later "Toug-Toulog" and three other elephants were lost in a winter quarters fire in Bridgeport on Nov.20, 1887. "John" on the other hand, had a long career with the Forepaugh Show, 4-Paw-Sells, Ringling Bros., and Ringling-Barnum before his death at the Sarasota Quarters on Jan. 16, 1932."
William Buckles Woodcock


Drawing from Illustrated London News

Records about Toug-Toulog (Toung-Taloung, Buddha) was updated
2009-12-02: pictures from The Illustrated London News, books
2010-05-10: Text
2012-05-29: eep records, nr

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