HomeThis week in historyFirst person successfully barrel rolls off Niagara Falls in 1901

First person successfully barrel rolls off Niagara Falls in 1901


On the 24th October 1901, Annie Edson Taylor successfully rolled from Niagara Falls. The daredevil of yesteryear was not only the first person to accomplish this feat, but also the first woman, and in addition Taylor was 63 years old!

Though it may seem that Annie was an intrepid thrill seeker, her motive to roll over the Falls wasn’t for fun! In fact, her decision to do this was entirely down to wanting to earn a large sum of money to support her through her retirement. Prior to her barrel adventure, Annie’s income came from her employment as a teacher, where she traveled around the USA teaching dance, even opening her own studio. In an interview for the Detroit Free Press, Annie said, ‘I looked around for something that nobody had ever done before as a means to make some money… The idea of going over Niagara came to me in an instant.’

Diagram of Annie Eddison in  Barrel
Diagram of Annie Edison in her Barrel – Image Public Domain

On the day of her barrel roll, Annie placed herself into the barrel, which had been custom-made with a comfortable mattress inside, complete with a safety harness attached. The wooden barrel, which was constructed of oak and iron, was pulled along by a rowing boat, before being set adrift. It took twenty minutes for the barrel to float down the river and be carried over Horseshoe Falls, and an extra hour for her to be cut out.

In 2011 Annie’s trip down the falls was turned into a Broadway musical called ‘Queen of the Mist’.

Latest Good News

Scotland Is First Country To Provide Free Period Products

Scotland has become the first country to make period products free for everyone that needs them, in a decision that was unanimously voted on...

Scientists Create Biodegradable Paper Battery Powered By Water

Researchers at the Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology (Empa) have invented a biodegradable battery that is printed onto paper. The paper...

Abandoned Berlin Airport To Be Transformed Into Environmentally-Friendly Hub

An abandoned Berlin airport will undergo a massive redevelopment plan, and is set to become an environmentally-friendly hub. This will be made up of...


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here