† Pilate (Pilot) is a dead Male ♂ Asian elephant (Elephas maximus), , who died 1899-04-11 at Great Wallace Brothers, in United States, . Official death reason described as died after unsuccesful castration.
Pilate (Pilot) was born wild .
No animal is quicker to resent an injury or insult, or supposed insult. Charles Alderfer, now manager of the Alderfer Circus, began his life as a showman with the elephants of the Wallace menagerie. One day in winter quarters the head painter wanted some wagons moved and Alderfer volunteered to bring out an elephant. He brought out Pilate, notoriously surly in disposition. In backing one of the wagons, the pole, or tongue, struck Pilate on the side. He thought it was Alderfer’s fault and started for him, his Ears
spread out like the sails of a yacht. The painter said for a few minutes he would not have given fifteen cents for Alderfer’s life. The latter ran at top speed and jumped over a fence. Then he put the hook into Pilate, climbed back, led him to the elephant house, chained him up, and whipped him severely. Pilate apparently recognized the injustice of his suspicion for after that he was always the friend of Alderfer.
No animal hates more intensely, or avenges himself more cruelly on his enemy, be that enemy human or of his own Species.
In October 1892, there was an exciting elephant fight at the Wallace winter quarters. It occurred on Sunday evening. The show had been in from the road only a few days. There were five elephants in the herd, four of them big bulls. After an early supper, the keepers left their charges, each chained to the floor by the left foreleg, and went to town. In some unaccountable way, four of the elephants got loose. Pilate and Diamond had always had an antipathy for each other and at once began Fighting.
Their trumpeting made the night hideous. The lions and tigers in a near-by building added their roaring and screaming to the awful chorus and the neighbors for miles around thought bedlam had been turned loose. The two vicious brutes fought savagely until Pilate had one of his Tusks
broken, whereupon Diamond put his head against his antagonist’s side and pushed him clear through the outer wall of the building, a solid brick wall fourteen inches thick. They had gored each other until the building looked as if a river of blood had flowed through it. But, strange to relate, neither of them was seriously hurt and in a few days, barring Pilate’s broken tusk, they appeared to be in as good condition as ever.
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