On the face of the terrible, kind inside: the life and death of bearded Julia, the ape woman from Mexico
Categories: HistoryBy Pictolic https://pictolic.com/article/on-the-face-of-the-terrible-kind-inside-the-life-and-death-of-bearded-julia-the-ape-woman-from-mexico.html
She was born in an Indian tribe, was sold to a circus as a child, became famous all over the world as the ugliest woman, traveled a lot, had a frenzied success among men, died at the age of 26 in cold Moscow and was buried in her native Mexico 153 years later…
With her example, the ape woman Julia Pastrana proved that beautiful appearance is not the main thing. For most of her life, Julia was not considered a member of the human race. But at the same time, she was kind, had a good career, and made a lot of money. In general, her life is full of secrets and mysteries. When she began performing on Broadway, the reaction to her was usually very violent: people in the audience seemed horrified that she looked like a monster, but at the same time danced gracefully and sang like an angel.
When you look at her photo, you realize how cruelly fate treated this girl, giving her absolutely nothing attractive and collecting all the shortcomings: tiny height (only 140 cm), rough and absolutely devoid of charm facial features, crooked teeth, and most importantly-terrible hairiness all over the body.
It should be noted that the girl was born in an Indian tribe. That is, she was of Indian descent. But very little is known about her childhood and youth. It is believed that she worked as a maid in a well-to-do Mexican family until 1854. Then an American named Wrights saw her. He persuaded the girl to go to the States and earn a lot of money there, participating in a freak show. Already in New York, the ugly woman was outbid by Theodore Post, who specializes in such shows.
On her ugly appearance in those days, the woman was able to make good money. Crowds of people came to see the live exhibit. In addition to her exotic appearance, the girl was very plastic and danced well.
The fame of Julia reached Europe, where she went on tour in the late fifties. The tour did not interfere with Julia's personal life. It may seem that men wanted to get her attention in order to get a person that other men do not have and that you can brag about in front of friends. Julia repeatedly made marriage proposals, but she refused all applicants. The reason is that their pockets are not filled enough with money. The girl earned quite well and did not want to be "sucked" by gigolos who were ready to tolerate her hairy face for the sake of money.
In 1859, the couple came to perform in Russia. Here is how her performance was announced in an advertisement distributed at Moscow fairs: "And here is the Brazilian monkey Julia Pastrana! A clever German put him in a cage and for money he seems to tell a story about it! And his monster in a crinoline yule! " Such a farcical poster-splint was designed for the general public. For the more serious gentlemen, the tone of the messages was different: "In the Hermitage Garden, a large entertainment and musical evening, in which the famous phenomenon of Miss Julia Pastrana will have the honor to appear before the Moscow public. The entrance price is 1 ruble 50 kopecks in silver. The children pay half."
But the glory and happiness did not last long. In 1860, in Moscow, Julia Pastrana gave birth to a child, the same as herself. The kid was less lucky, and he was able to live only three incomplete days. And Julia herself did not survive a difficult birth and died five days later. She was only 26 years old.
In 1862, upon presentation of the proper documents of the legal marriage, Lent won the court. But the authorities forbade him to participate in scientific exhibitions: do not fool your head, boy, they still understand that you have an ordinary commercial enterprise. Lent later married again, and again to a bearded woman, whom he passed off as Julia's sister (although, judging by the photo, it was an ordinary European woman). After that, they began to travel through grad and vesyam-Lent, his current bearded wife, the bodies of the former bearded wife and their common baby, also bearded.
For several decades, the mummies were forgotten, they appeared again in 1921, in the" Room of Horrors " of the Norwegian Mr. Lund. There they exhibited until 1970, when unrest broke out in Norway. As a result, in the summer of 1976, angry thugs broke into the warehouse of the "Room of Horrors" and mutilated the mummy of a child, and Julia's mummy was stolen. It is not known where it was for the following decades, but in 1990 it was discovered in Oslo, at the Institute of Forensic Medicine. There was talk that it was time to stop exposing the woman like an animal for everyone to see, and it was necessary to bury her like a human being.
Eventually, the coffin containing Julia's remains was handed over to the Mexican Ambassador to Denmark during a ceremony at Oslo University Hospital and then sent to Mexico. After a Roman Catholic mass in the church of Leyva ,the "monkey woman" was buried in the local cemetery to the sound of national music. Julia Pastrana, who died in 1860, was buried only on February 12, 2013 (after 153 years). Although she was not a beauty herself, her last abode was very beautiful: Julia was laid in a snow-white coffin decorated with delicate white roses and lilies.