Tillie an Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) at Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden

☨ Tillie
ID nr:
Species: Asian elephant (Elephas maximus)
Sex and age:Female ♀
Dead date: 1932-01-18
Death reason: unknown:
Location:Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden
ArrivalCincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden 1925-00-00
from John Robinson Circus
Born:* wild
Document updated2009-11-14: updated dead link
2010-05-12: text, source
2018-04-19: text
I once had an experience at Ashland, Kentucky, with the old John Robinson circus, which made me wonder if it is not rather because an elephant does not wish to leave his place than because he is not clever enough to free himself, that we find him patiently in one spot fastened only by a chain thrown around a stake. I came into the menagerie a short time after the parade and found Tillie, the largest member of the herd, at a considerable distance from her place, quietly feeding on the rich, succulent grass with which the lot was covered. She very readily went back with me and I took a half-hitch about the stake. In less than five minutes I saw she was loose again. Thinking I had not fastened her securely, I brought her back and this time took extra care in chaining her. I then went out to lunch. When I returned, she was once more grazing. As I was bringing her back for the third time, the superintendent of the menagerie came in and said: “You might as well let her go; she wants to eat grass and it will not do any harm. When the people are in, she’ll stay in her place.” I then watched her. She took hold of her chain, but did not pull a steady pull, instead shaking and wriggling until she had lifted it up off the stake.
W. Henry Sheak, The Elephant in Captivity, Natural History, September-October 1922

Records about Tillie from Bob Cline
Female Asian 1872 to 1911 - John Robinson Circus
1912 to 1924 - John Robinsons Military Elephant Act
1925 to 1932 - Cincinnati Zoo
Died - Jan. 18, 1932

Reference list

Koehl, D., (2020). Tillie, an Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) at Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden in United States. Elephant Encyclopedia, available online retrieved 21 October 2020 at https://www.elephant.se/database2.php?elephant_id=2335. (archived at the Wayback machine)

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