The Stoned Elephant:
The first elephant, (named Old Bett) to set foot in America came onto Derby Wharf from Jacob Crowninshield's merchant vessel, "America" in 1796. Instead of water, which was in short supply, the elephant was fed, and learned to enjoy, dark beer.
The enterprising Captain Jacob Crowninshield charged spectators 25 cents to watch the elephant uncork and drink bottles of beer.
Crowninshield eventually sold the elephant for $10,000.
- Vertical File in Salem Collection - Stoned Elephant
- "At last, a look at Salem's many firsts" Salem Evening News, Oct. 7, 1988, p.9
- "A tale of a potted pachyderm" Boston Sunday Globe, June 12, 1994, p. C4
- "Salem has its share of "firsts" Salem Evening News, June 18, 1993, p. 10A