Cincinnati Zoo 3



Zoo's First Cage.jpg (325610 bytes)
Zoo's First Cage

   The image above shows the first cage that is attributed to the zoo's beginning. Andrew Erkenbrecher is known as the founder of the Cincinnati Zoo. He always had a great love for birds and animals and this was shown in the many birds and animals he kept as pets on his farm. The large cage above was built by him in 1868 to house his many birds. This image taken in the 1920s shows the cage still being used at the zoo for this purpose although by this time it was primarily a item kept by the stockholders as a reminder of Mr. Erkenbrecher. I do not know what happened to it.


Birds-1.jpg (108575 bytes)    Birds-1a.jpg (154057 bytes)            Birds-2a.jpg (94524 bytes) Same image Birds-2b.jpg (112464 bytes)

   There were originally 7 of these Japanese-style aviaries, constructed in 1875. In 1974 6 of them were demolished with the 7th being preserved as a memorial to Martha, the last known passenger pigeon.

Zoo-Martha.jpg (108209 bytes)        Passenger Pigeon.jpg (97790 bytes)        Aviary-pre demolition-1974.jpg (187703 bytes)        Martha's Pavilion-1984.jpg (97298 bytes)
                               Martha                                                     Aviary in 1974                    Martha's Pavilion-1984

    Passenger pigeons were once the most numerous bird species on the planet with between 3 to 5 billion birds, one in every four birds in North America was a passenger pigeon. There were reports of flocks so huge they took 3days for them to pass. The last known colony was reported in Michigan. When Martha arrived at the zoo in 1902 she was one of the few remaining passenger pigeons. The species had been ruthlessly slaughtered between 1880-1900 by hunters who used them for food and for live targets. The Cincinnati Zoo, in a desperate attempt to help replenish the species, offered  $1,500 for a mate for Martha, but none could be found (in their heyday they were worth 10cents per 100). The 3rd  non-postcard image above is one of the 5 original bird aviary buildings that were built in 1875. Martha died in one of these buildings Sept. 2, 1914 and it is now a memorial to her and to Incas the last Carolina Parakeet that died 2-21-1918, which also has disappeared from the planet.
   It has been written that Martha died when she was an old and frail 29 year old bird, but that is extremely unlikely. Doves and pigeons normally live anywhere from 13 to 15 years and Martha's age is believed to be anywhere  from 17 to 22 years. Her body was packed in 300 lbs of ice and sent to the Smithsonian Institution, by refrigerated car, in Washington D.C. where it was mounted by taxidermist Nelson Wood. Martha was on display from 1956 until 1999. She was returned to the zoo in 1974 for the memorial dedication. She flew first class with a airline attendant as escort. There are plans to display Martha next summer (2014) on the 100th anniversary of her death.

Birds-4.jpg (112535 bytes)
Walk thru bird cage

   The Walk Through Flight Cage was opened in 1962 and allowed visitors to view birds close up.


Eagle vert.jpg (113862 bytes)    Birds-3.jpg (128906 bytes)            Aquila-(Eagles).jpg (185749 bytes)          Trained Eagle Brownie.jpg (250973 bytes)
          Eagle House           Flight Cage                           Aquila (eagle)                Trained Eagle Brownie & owner

   The Eagle House was built in 1857 and was replaced by the Flight Cage that was constructed in 1970. It holds all the large birds.

Zoo-Bald Eagle-exlg.jpg (621828 bytes)
5" x 7" Card

   Betsy Ross and Brookfield Baldy, the pair of Bald Eagles at the zoo, produced an eaglet which was later released in the wild. The release was part of a program aimed at increasing the population of the endangered species.


Macaw.jpg (78700 bytes)


Birds-6.jpg (125415 bytes)                Birds-5.jpg (122705 bytes)                Birds-7.jpg (96589 bytes)


Birds-8.jpg (113025 bytes)            Zoo stork-nest.jpg (117892 bytes)            Birds-9.jpg (89087 bytes)
White Peacock                          RP of  Storks on nest                         You name them


Toucans.jpg (312980 bytes)
Toco Toucans



    Many of these early cards show a female Asian elephant named "Hatnee" who was a favorite of zoo visitors for decades. She frequently gave rides to children while being led by her trainer, Ed Coyne. Ed started at the zoo when he was 10 years old in 1877 and was still working there 65 years later when he died in 1942. He is seen standing on the leg of the elephant in the 1st non-postcard image below, and standing in front of the Asian elephant in the other.

Zoo Keeper Ed Coyne.jpg (677068 bytes)            Asian Elephant & trainer Ed Coyne.jpg (212343 bytes)
Zoo Keeper Ed Coyne  around 1915


Zoo Elephant 1.jpg (122770 bytes)          Zoo Elephant 1a.jpg (99039 bytes)          Zoo Elephant 2.jpg (96271 bytes)          Zoo Elephant 3.jpg (97237 bytes)
Hatnee being led by Ed Coyne                                                                                                            


Zoo Elephant 4.jpg (96384 bytes)          Zoo Elephant 5.jpg (80894 bytes)          Zoo Elephant 6.jpg (97661 bytes)          Zoo Elephant 7.jpg (111899 bytes)


Zoo Elephant 8.jpg (121793 bytes)          Zoo Elephant 9.jpg (123890 bytes)          Elephant-new-1.jpg (148922 bytes)          Elephant-new-2.jpg (97417 bytes)


Zoo-Pigmy Elephant Gimpy.jpg (324374 bytes)
Gimpy-A Pigmy Elephant
Photo by Paul Briol

   Gimpy was donated to the zoo in 1932 by Judge Alfred K. Nippert. She was only 6' tall at maturity and was one of the most popular attractions at the zoo for many years.


Zoo 2 Horned Rhino.jpg (1209145 bytes)
African Two-Horned Rhino