Sarah Ann Henley
May 8, 1885 - It was on this night that a distraught barmaid named Sarah Ann Henley jumped off the Clifton Suspension Bridge that towers 246 feet above the Avon River in England. Miraculously, she survived.
Legend has it that her skirt billowed out like a parachute and slowed her descent. Instead of landing in the water she drifted to the Bristol side of the Avon and plopped into the muddy riverbank.
Two men rushed to her assistance and they found her conscious and without any major injuries that they could see. They tried to load her into a carriage for transport to the Bristol Infirmary, but the cabman refused to let her in his cab because she was covered in muck.
Henley eventually made it to a doctor, but besides a severe case of shock, she was relatively unscathed.
Turns out she had tried to commit suicide after receiving a letter from her fiance letting her know that he wanted to call off the engagement.
Her story of survival became a national sensation. Henley would eventually marry another guy and got on with a normal life. She would live to be 85, and she never tired of telling the story about her amazing leap.