George Bailey   

The Era of Niagara Tightrope Walkers began on June 30th, 1859

It was on June 30th, 1859 that Jean Francois Gravelet, better known as Blondin made the first crossing of the Niagara Gorge on a tightrope. His rope was set up at a point have way between the present day Rainbow Bridge and the Whirlpool Bridge. The walk was not within site of Niagara Falls. He made several successful walks that year and continued into the summer of 1860.On one of his walks he carried his manager on his back.
 
Blondin made his final tightrope walk in 1896. He died peacefully in his sleep a year later on February 22,1897 at the age of 73.