Tuesday, July 22, 2014

The Man Who Barked

Fedor Adrianovich Jeftichew was born in 1868 in Saint Petersburg, Russia. Like his father before him, he suffered from Hypertrichosis – an abnormal growth of hair on the body. He was brought to the United States in 1884 by famous showman Phineas Taylor Barnum [05.07.1810-07.04.1891]. Barnum hired sixteen year old Fedor as a sideshow performer and had him bark and growl at viewers as part of his act. He created a background story, according to which a hunter had discovered young Fedor and his father Adrian living in a cave in the forests of Kostmara, and renamed him Theodore Petrof. Theodore had, according to this story, gone to school for a short time, but did not posses the required faculties. In reality, Fedor spoke fluent English, Russian and German. He became known as “Jo-Jo the dog faced boy” and traveled extensively through Europe, north America and Australia. Fedor died from Pneumonia in Salonica, Greece, on January 31, 1904. The Russian clergy refused to have his body autopsied.

Fedor in his deathbed

No comments:

Post a Comment