The Fiji mermaid (also Feejee mermaid) was a common feature in sideshows which were popular in the mid 1800s. The original exhibit of the Fiji mermaid, was a mummified body of supposedly a creature that was half mammal and half fish. This Hoax was popularized by showman Phineas Taylor Barnum and has since been copied many times in other attractions. The original exhibit was shown around the United States in the 1840s. It was lost in the 1860s when Barnum's museum caught fire. The mermaid was thought to have been made from; the tail of a fish, the torso of a baby orangutan and the head of a monkey.
Incase you were wondering our MadMermaid comes from a photograph taken by me in the Yasawas, Fiji on a dive site called Whiskey’s Reef!
This is a newspaper advertisement for the Boston Museum, 1850
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