In front of a crowd of journalists and guests, Topsy was then fed carrots laced with potassium cyanide. Some people believe that Topsy's execution using electric shock was carried out to prove the competition's greatness between the two great inventors, Thomas Edison and Nikola Tesla.  To meet these objections, park officials, with the approval of the SPCA, subsequently decided to use a combination of poisoning, strangulation, and electrocution. The historical archetype of these executions was the killing of the elephant Chuny in London in 1826. Topsy, one of which was pushed with a sharp hook between the eyes and on the head. The circus toured that year in combination with a Wild West show. In most cases, Edison had no personal role in the formation or direction of these companies. Topsy was a female elephant who was born around 1875 in Southeast Asia. Abstract An Asian elephant called Topsy was electrocuted in front of 1500 spectators by Thomas Edison in New York on January 4, 1903. The newspaper accounts vary from several thousand to 1,500 to “only persons immediately concerned and reporters.”  Had Edison been present, the newspapers would certainly have made note of it, but none even mentioned him at all. Just how many people came out to witness Topsy’s execution is a matter of dispute. But apparently, the alternating current (AC) method invented by Nikola Tesla was more efficient.  Elena Holodny, writing in Business Insider, chimed in, too, noting that Edison “sought to prove that alternating current actually can kill quickly.” Holodny then goes on to say that “at a demonstration [Edison] held at Coney Island, he electrocuted and killed a circus elephant named Topsy.” Countless other websites have followed suit, making the same claim against Edison, likely because the film made of this singular event was given the title “Electrocuting an Elephant—Thomas A. Edison.”. Topsy was about 35 years old at the time of her death, which is about half the expected life span for an elephant with a decent life in the wild. And in 1902, Topsy the Elephant made national news when she killed a spectator at Forepaugh’s circus. She was later smuggled into America by Adam Forepaugh, the owner of Forepaugh and Sells Circus, who dishonestly used to bill her as the first elephant born in America. In fact, the correspondence between Edison and Gilmore during January and February 1903 (there is none from December of the previous year) chiefly concerns patents for phonograph speakers. She, in turn, killed him. But because Topsy has a bad reputation as a dangerous elephant, no zoo or show will buy it. Did he have anything to do with the execution of Topsy? Edison’s cameraman filmed the entire scene, and the motion picture, titled Electrocuting an Elephant, was released later in 1903. A terrifying film made the event infamous, leading to confusion over whether this was part of the epic battle between Thomas Edison and Nicola … Topsy's bent tail was evidence of the result of a severe beating. However many spectators there were, Edison was not among them. An illustration of Topsy, a female Asian elephant killed at a Coney Island, New York park by electrocution on January 4, 1903. One of them was his trainer named James Fielding Blount, who was drunk. Edison's DC method was badly defeated. In an attempt to discredit Westinghouse and Tesla by showing how dangerous AC electricity is, Thomas Edison electrified an elephant named Topsy.Find me … The owner of Luna Park then turned to the latest electric current invention at that time. This is the tragic story of Topsy, which also dragged the names of two of the world's great inventors, Thomas Edison and Nikola Tesla. The Daily Beast's Michael Daly's new book Topsy explores the life of the ill-fated elephant, who was put to death for being a "serial man-killer." Topsy's old trainer Whitey Ault was offered a sum of $ 25 to do it. She was sold to Sea Lion Park in 1902 which was then sold to … A Tale of Two Islands: Haiti and the Dominican Republic. To be more precise, it’s to be guilty of being a wild-caught elephant held Not infrequently, she was also beaten and threatened with dangerous objects. She was illegally brought to the United States as a baby and made as a stage animal in Forepaugh Circus. The elephant was then executed ruthlessly. Many believe Topsy was a victim of the Battle of the Current, namely the direct current and alternating current between Thomas Edison and Nikola Tesla. It is also unlikely that he was personally involved in producing the film “Electrocuting an Elephant,” even though the title bears his name. Due to high maintenance costs and nothing to handle Topsy, Thompson and Dundy tried to eliminate her. He said that Westinghouse would kill their customers within six months of having the system installed in their homes. A memorial for Topsy Edison is not mentioned in any of the numerous contemporaneous newspaper accounts of the killing of Topsy. But the film could have borne no relation to this so-called “Battle of the Currents,” which had ended more than a decade earlier. The incident wasn’t entirely Topsy’s fault; the patron in The film was released and watched on the kinetoscope under the title " Electrocuting an Elephant. " Not wanting to keep a “bad elephant,” the Forepaugh circus, which was then owned by James Bailey, sold Topsy to a group that helped