The show which I joined was one of the largest then in existence, having more than a hundred horses, ten fine Ceylon elephants, a gorgeously carved and painted "Car of Juggernaut," and many other "attractions" which seemed marvelous in my boyish eyes. Not the least of these in point of attractiveness and popularity was General "Tom" Thumb, who was petted and feasted wherever he went. But Nellis, the man without arms who could paint pictures and shoot pennies from the fingers of the manager, claimed a large share of my silent admiration.
At last, however, a fight did come off, and a hot one it was, too!Right in the midst of it one of my horses, which had been trained to fire off a cannon from its back, got loose and, fully accoutred, galloped into the thick of the mélêe. The creature seized the strap which operated the trigger and began firing blank cartridges in every direction. If ever a mob of toughs was frightened it was then! They stopped not upon the order of their going, but fairly flew in all directions.One of them afterward told a policeman that they could fight any gang of showmen that ever traveled, but when a horse commenced to unload on them with a cannon, he knew it was time to quit.