P. T. Barnum
American showman and politician (1810-1891)
Phineas Taylor Barnum (5 July 1810 – 7 April 1891) was an American showman who is remembered for founding the circus that eventually became Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus. He is also known for his entertaining hoaxes.
- I am a showman by profession...and all the gilding shall make nothing else of me.
- As quoted in P. T. Barnum: America's Greatest Showman (1995) by Philip B. Kunhardt Jr. and Philip B. Kunhardt III, ISBN 0-679-43574-3, p. vi
The Humbugs of the World (1865)Edit
- But however mysterious is nature, however ignorant the doctor, however imperfect the present state of physical science, the patronage and the success of quacks and quackeries are infinitely more wonderful than those of honest and laborious men of science and their careful experiments.
Art of Money Getting (1880)Edit
- Money is in some respects like fire; it is a very excellent servant but a terrible master.
- The plan of "counting the chickens before they are hatched" is an error of ancient date, but it does not seem to improve by age.
- Politeness and civility are the best capital ever invested in business.
- The best kind of charity is to help those who are willing to help themselves.
- In fact, as a general thing, money-getters are the benefactors of our race.
- The desire for wealth is nearly universal, and none can say it is not laudable, provided the possessor of it accepts its responsibilities, and uses it as a friend to humanity.
- Always leave them wanting more.
- Commonly attributed to Barnum without citation; such as in "Pardon My French: How a Grumpy American Fell in Love with France" by Allen Johnson
- There's a sucker born every minute.
- Commonly attributed to Barnum, there is much testimony of contemporaries that he never actually said this, and in "P. T. Barnum Never Did Say "There's a Sucker Born Every Minute" R. J. Brown asserts that it actually originated with a banker named David Hannum, in reference to one of Barnum's hoaxes: a replica of the Cardiff Giant.
- Every crowd has a silver lining.
- The first appearance of this quote in print was in the July 1908 issue of the journal Profitable Advertising under the heading "Modernized Maxims." It next appeared in the June 1911 issue of The Philistine where Elbert Hubbard labeled it: "motto for a hotel-keeper." In the 1920s, it was published with the label: "Pickpocket's motto." The attribution to P.T. Barnum didn't appear in print until a 1934 article in Reader's Digest.
- Entry on P.T. Barnum in the Concise Encyclopedia of Tufts History
- Art of Money Getting by P.T. Barnum
- Works by P. T. Barnum at Project Gutenberg
- P.T. Barnum's gravesite at findagrave
- The Barnum Museum
- P.T. Barnum at Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Circus
- Barnum's American Museum
- The Lost Museum
- The Life of Phineas T. Barnum by Joel Benton, at Project Gutenberg
- P.T. Barnum, the Shakespeare of Advertising
- P.T. Barnum and Henry Bergh