circus strongman

The-Mighty-Atom-Joseph-Greenstein

JOSEPH GREENSTEIN – The Mighty Atom

Some call him the ‘The Last Great Circus Stongman’ but perhaps a more accurate title would simply be ‘The Greatest Strongman”. Yosselle L. Greenstein was born three months premature on July 15, 1893 in Suvalk Poland into the poorest family in town. Weighing less than 4 pounds, “Joseph” Greenstein was fortunate to even survive his…

JOHN HOLTUM - The Cannonball Man

JOHN HOLTUM – The Cannonball Man

At one point in history every circus, carnival, and vaudeville hall had a strongman on hand to astound spectators. The image of a mustachioed man clad in leopard print while hoisting a bending barbell high aloft is still synonymous with circuses. The spectacles these men provided ranged from the highly impressive the the borderline mundane but in a golden age populated with hundreds of contemporaries an individual simply had to go the extra mile to ensure fame and fortune.

John Holtum elected to stand apart by becoming a human target. Holtum caught cannon balls fired directly at his him from point-blank range.

ANGUS MACASKILL - The Cape Breton Giant

ANGUS MACASKILL – The Cape Breton Giant

In 1981 the Guinness Book of World Records recognized MacAskill as the largest true giant to have ever lived, the strongest man who ever lived and the man with the largest chest measurements of any non-obese man.

sandwina-the-worlds-strongest-woman

SANDWINA – Woman of Steel

The topic of iron-strong women has been covered previously here, with the beguiling Charmion and the mighty Minerva being featured formerly. However one name that should never be omitted from the records of curious history is Sandwina, a woman who at her peak was perhaps the most physically powerful person walking the planet earth. The…

eli-bowen-leggles-circus-freak

ELI BOWEN – The Legless Acrobat

The remarkable Eli Bowen was born in Ohio on October 14, 1844 as one of ten children. While his siblings were physically average, Eli was born with his disproportional feet attached directly to his pelvis. In essence, Eli Bowen was a man born with feet but no legs.Despite his physical configuration, or perhaps because of…