Born July 5th 1810 in Bethel, Connecticut, P. T. Barnum is descended from a Taylor family. Let’s start with his full name, Phineas Taylor Barnum. P. T.’s mother was Irene Taylor, daughter of Phineas Taylor (1760-1837). Phineas Taylor’s father was Nathan Taylor (1717-1798), and his father was also called Nathan Taylor (1682-1782). Nathan Taylor the elder’s father was Thomas Taylor, born in Windsor, Hartford, Connecticut in 1643 (died in 1735). All these Taylors were born and died in Connecticut and I do not have record of their immigrant ancestor.
Wikipedia describes Barnum as “an American showman, businessman, scam artist and entertainer, remembered for promoting celebrated hoaxes and for founding the circus that became the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus.” Barnum brought memorable people and performances to the American audience. These included celebrity midget Tom Thumb and Swedish singer Jenny Lind. Barnum served a couple of terms in the Connecticut State Legislature and as Mayor of Bridgeport, Connecticut. But his greatest fame comes from his work as a circus entrepreneur. He started the Barnum and Bailey Circus, which lives on in at least one form today.
In addition Barnum is well known for a remark that may be true to his spirit, but cannot be documented to have been uttered by him: “There’s a sucker born every minute.”
Barnum lived a long and full life, cramming more experience into his 80 years than most people could do in three times that long. He died in 1891 in Bridgeport, Connecticut.
Does your Taylor family intersect with the line of Phineas Taylor Barnum?
Here is a link to P. T. Barnum’s genealogy: http://www.barnum.org/fam00170.htm.
Lalia Wilson for the Taylor Surname Project
Lalia is keenly interested in genetic genealogy for many reasons, among them the many common surnames in her personal genealogy. In addition to Taylor, these include: Jackson, Johnson, Madden, Moore, Robinson, Stone and Wilson. These families were in North America prior to 1700 and followed migration paths from Virginia or Pennsylvania or New York to Ohio then Missouri or to Kentucky then Missouri. Please contact Lalia with questions about the blog, or story ideas, or if you think you’re a relative: Lalia W /at/ aol dot com.
Leonard, Born, Barteaux, Whitman, Starratt, LeCain, Ritchie, Ryerson, Gaston, Perry, Lockwood, Beall/Bell/Beale, Beatty, Wheat, Muliken, Foster, Vail, Salmon, Goodwin, Kinnan, Mead/Meade, Augustus, Bright, Pope, Dickerson, Pulliam, Glover, Scott, Sutton, Rice, Hutt, Spence, Crockwell, Cassell, Lingenfelter, Harbaugh, Springer, Hockersmith