The “Rathausgasse” was once the scene of a real life, tragic-comic theater.
In the summer of 1866, an American circus performed one day in Murten, featured an elephant act that thrilled the spectators.
The next morning, residents were awakened by a cry of terror: The bull elephant killed its keeper and ran on a wild rampage throughout the city. Finally, the elephant was driven into a stable. Two loaded canons were hastily ordered from the Fribourg armory and they finally arrived at 11:00 a.m. A 6 pounder canon was used to bring down and kill the elephant. The canon ball is displayed at the Murten Museum and the elephant’s skeleton is in the Natural History Museum in Bern. Since this event, the lower part of the Rathausgasse is known as “Elephant Lane.”