Most of the historical images presented on this site come from the collection of Adolphe AYNAUD (1887-1971). Let his son Jean-Marie Aynaud evoke the passion of his father:
“The arrival of the first giraffe in France in 1827, a gift offered by the pasha of Egypt MEHEMET ALI to King CHARLES X, is an event that caught his attention. His research led him to reveal the curiosity and considerable impact on public opinion that the arrival of this animal aroused amongst Parisian; as evidenced by the many prints, popular images and various everyday objects that he managed to assemble in an original and unique collection. His expertise in this field is recognized. Thus, in the mid-1950s, a host at the precursor of television (then “ORTF”) asked him to talk about the giraffe of 1827 during a cultural program organized by Mr. DEMAGNY. As my parents had no receiver at the time, I went backstage at the studios on rue Cognacq-Jay to see my father in front of the cameras, humorously answering questions…”.
(Source: ADOLPHE AYNAUD (1887-1971), Autodidact, art lover and collector, Biographical chronicle by his son Jean-Marie AYNAUD, private document, February 2006).