Black Diamond
Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) at
Al G. Barnes Circus in United States

dead elephant ☨ ♂ Black Diamond  dead elephant
Black Diamond displayed as museum specimen.
Black Diamond as museum specimen. This image is inline deepink from an external server, inline linking does not directly infringe copyright but can be removed on request.
Black Diamond and Homer D. "Curley" Pritchett, San Antonio 1928.<br />Photo: Tom Scapalanda. <a href="">Buckles Woodcock colllection</a>
Black Diamond and Homer D. "Curley" Pritchett, San Antonio 1928.
Photo: Tom Scapalanda. Buckles Woodcock colllection
Taxidermy locationWatkins Construction Co taxidermy museum, Corsicana, United States



Species:Asian elephant (Elephas maximus)
Sex and age:Male ♂ 32 years old

People killed:4: 1926: elephant trainer Been Reed in Texas 1929: Eva Donohoo in Corsicana, TX
Born:* 1897 wild
Birth place: in Asia unspecified location
Dead: 1929-10-16
Death reason: shot: execution by gunshot
Burial: 1929-10-16
Locations - owners
Present / last location:Al G. Barnes Circus, in United States

Date of arrival

1928-00-00Al G. Barnes Circus
from Wilson's Greater Shows

1927-00-00Wilson's Greater Shows
from Monroe Brothers Circus

1925-00-00Monroe Brothers Circus
from Atterbury Brothers Circus

1919-00-00Atterbury Brothers Circus
from William P. Hall Animal Farm

1919-00-00William P. Hall Animal Farm
from R.T. Richards Circus

1917-00-00R.T. Richards Circus 1917-00-00
from Wheeler Brothers Circus

1916-00-00Wheeler Brothers Circus
from Hugo Brothers Circus

1915-00-00Hugo Brothers Circus
from Barton and Bailey Circus

1915-00-00Barton and Bailey Circus
from William P. Hall Animal Farm

1914-00-00William P. Hall Animal Farm
from Gentry Brothers Circus

1900-00-00Gentry Brothers Circus
from Carl Hagenbecks Tierpark (Neue Pferdemarkt)

0000-00-00Carl Hagenbecks Tierpark (Neue Pferdemarkt)
from Firma Carl Hagenbeck

Record history
History of updates2009-11-23: previous locations
2010-09-26: previous locations

Latest document update2021-07-03 13:21:16
Relevant literature

† Black Diamond is a dead Male ♂ Asian elephant (Elephas maximus), , who died 1929-10-16 at Al G. Barnes Circus, in United States, . Official death reason described as execution by gunshot.

Museum locationThe Museum specimen remains of this animal is within the collection at Watkins Construction Co taxidermy museum, in Corsicana, United States, since 1990-00-00.


Black Diamond was born wild 1897 at Asia unspecified location.

Comments / pictures

Records about Black Diamond from Bob Cline

DIAMOND ( Black ) 1900 to 1914 - Gentry Bros. Circus
Male Asian 1914 - bought by Wm. P. Hall
1915 - Barton & Bailey Circus
1915 - Hugo Bros. Circus
1916 - Wheeler Bros. Circus
1917 to 1918 - R. T. Richards Circus
1919 - Wm. P. Hall farm
1919 to 1924 - Atterbury Circus
1925 - Monroe Bros. Circus
killed Ben Sweet at Oilton, TX. On Jan. 1, 1926.
1927 - Wilson Greater Shows
1928 to 1929 - Al G. Barnes Circus
Killed Eva Speed Donohue Oct. 12, 1929 in Corsicana, TX.
Died - Oct. 16, 1929 in Kennedy, TX. ( execution by gunshot )

Bob Cline, author of the book "Americas elephants".

Black Diamond in Al G. Barnes CircusIn January 1926 Black Diamond killed the elephant trainer Been Reed in Texas, and had always a system of chains, in order to restrict his movement and possibilities to hit or grab people with his Trunk.

Homer D. "Curley" Pritchett is reported to have known Black Diamond for 28 years, and trained him seven years. In 1928 while the Circus toured Corsicana, Navarro County, Texas, Pritchett was approached by Mrs Eva Speed Donohoo, who offered him job at her ranch "Shoestring" Plantation near Kerens, Texas. The conversation happemed to be in front of Black Diamond, eating his hay. Pritchett accepted and left the Al Barnes Circus and the elephant.

One and a half year later, when Al Barnes Circus came to Corsicana again, Pritchett went to visit the elephants, and even helped take him out of the boxcar.

Next day, during the town parade, Black Diamond spotted Pritchett and his employer Eva Donohoo, and went berserk, rammed a car, tossed Mr. Pritchett over a car breaking his arm, and threw Eva Donohoo to the ground and killed her. Donohoos tombstone in Oakwood Cemetery reads: "Eva Speed Donohoo, Nov. 18, 1877 - Oct. 12, 1929, Killed By Al G. Barnes Circus elephant. "

Four days later in Kenedy, Texas, owner John Ringling issued his verdict: "Kill Diamond in some humane way."

Black Diamond in Al G. Barnes CircusDifferent suggestions were discussed and tried, including cyanide in his food, but with no success.

Finally a volunteer firing squad unloaded their weapons into Diamond while he was chained between some trees.

Parts of Black Diamond was stored in a basement at Houston's Harris County Museum of Natural History, and later bought by Mr Carmack Watkins, who put them on display in his Trophy Room.

Black Diamond in Al G. Barnes Circus
Black Diamond in Al G. Barnes Circus
Reference list


Koehl, Dan, (2023). Black Diamond, Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) located at Al G. Barnes Circus in United States. Elephant Encyclopedia, available online retrieved 7 December 2023 at (archived at the Wayback machine)

Sources used for this article is among others:


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Categories1929 deaths | Watkins Construction Co taxidermy museum Taxidermy | 1897 births | Elephants from Al G. Barnes Circus | United States | Mankillers | Asian elephants

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