Today, in 1901, Annie Taylor rode over Niagara Falls in a barrel. All you need to know is in the photo. She was 63 and lived most of her life in my town of Bay City, Michigan.
She described her stunt as follows: "If it was with my dying breath, I would caution anyone against attempting the feat... I would sooner walk up to the mouth of a cannon, knowing it was going to blow me to pieces than make another trip over the Fall".
Bay City's schools, in fact all schools in Bay County had a class in 7th grade called "Bay County History" and, remarkably, there was a text book. It was as dull as gravel and pretty much the same agony that Annie stated above. She didn't make the book but our teacher, Mr. Hopkins had an aunt or something who knew Annie and he had some photos to show. That Ms. Taylor didn't make a book that featured every male lumber baron for miles was really no surprise. Others of us with a more jaundiced view of our little
town thought her to be the most important person ever to walk our streets.
Long story short, Annie didn't make a fortune from her stunt She died in her late 70s near Lockport, NY. If you go in the main gate and take the first right turn, her resting place is just a few yards in.