The other day when out for a walk I went past Henri’s Motel. Out front they have a white barrel that is painted with the words:
I supposed they are referring to Major Lloyd Hill who went over the Falls in a barrel on July 30, 1949. NiagaraFallsInfo.com has the following information:
On July 30th 1949, Major Lloyd Hill, using a 650 pound barrel, successfully navigated the Whirlpool Rapids. Hill became stranded in the Whirlpool and had to be rescued by the City of Niagara Falls Fire Department.
I don’t know what all he had inside the barrel, but without any padding it sure looks like you’d be tossed around quite a bit!
From the Niagara Falls Review:
One of the last men to go over the falls in a barrel wants to see a proper memorial for one of Niagara Falls’ most legendary figures.
Peter DeBernardi, who survived a 1989 trip over the Horseshoe Falls in a barrel he shared with Jeffrey Petkovich, is trying to raise awareness for a possible statue of famed river man Red Hill Sr. somewhere along the Niagara Parkway. Read More…
From Yahoo! Malaysia News:
Niagara Falls had been a tourist destination for decades before 1901, but it wasn’t until Oct. 24 of that year that the first person decided to ride a barrel over the falls.
Former schoolteacher Annie Edson Taylor made the plunge on her 63rd birthday, hoping for fame and fortune. Taylor, whose husband had died in the Civil War, had traveled around the country taking various jobs before eventually settling on the barrel scheme as a way to avoid poverty in her old age.
From The Walton Sun (Santa Rosa Beach, Florida):
Steve Trotter is an intelligent, well-spoken and charismatic individual who happens to have barreled over Niagara Falls, twice.
And, he’s about to do it again.
When he was 22 years old, the Freeport man was the youngest person ever to ride over Niagara Falls in a barrel. Doing what most people define as crazy, Trotter lives life on the edge.
Now 50 years old, and while shucking and jiving at the Acme Oyster House at The Village of Baytowne Wharf, Trotter spoke to the Sun about the first time he decided to do the unthinkable.
“I went to visit the Falls as a kid when I was 7 years old, and I just had a draw to it,” he said. “Then I saw Annie Taylor’s barrel and I thought, ‘I have to do that.’ ”
From the Niagara Falls Review:
After successfully going over the Horseshoe Falls in a barrel on Oct. 24, 1901, Annie Taylor, the first person to try such a stunt, reportedly said: “Nobody ought to ever do that again!”
For 10 years nobody did.
Then along came Bobby Leach. A native of Cornwall, England, he was a daredevil full of bravado and bravery who first stepped into the spotlight in Niagara Falls in 1906 when he parachuted into the Niagara River after jumping off the Upper Steel Arch Bridge, which was close to where the Rainbow Bridge is now.
Leach’s ultimate goal, however, was to become the second person, and the first man, to go over the Horseshoe Falls in a barrel. After many delays, frustrations and considerable expense, he was ready.