Also known as 'the snake pit', an occasional Sunday afternoon visit to the Snake Man of La Perouse was a tradition for generations of Sydney families.
The original Snake Man was "Professor" Frederick Fox, also known as the "Snake King", who was proud of the immunity to snake venom that he had developed. However, like other such showmen, he did have his own special antidote.
In 1913 Fox traveled to India to sell his antidote. Another local, Herbert See, took over the La Perouse show but he was bitten by a tiger snake and died in hospital. While demonstrating his antidote in 1914, Fox was bitten several times by a krait. He treated himself but overlooked one bite and died after a few hours.
George Cann took on the show in the 1920s and the Cann family ran the show thereafter.
John Cann was awarded an OAM in 1992 for service to the community, conservation and the environment. The area surrounding the snake pit has been named Cann Park. John Cann, the last of the snake men, held his last show on 18 April 2010.