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Pierre Gasnier

      This is Pierre Gasnier, circus strongman, who performed for Barnum and Bailey Circus. Like the Mighty Atom who followed him, he broke chains as shown here with the expansion of his chest.  I believe that the Mighty Atom broke #8 Jack chain, the chains here look to be of a similar grade.

Fred Rollon

This German Strongman trained exclusively  in strandpulling. David Webster reported in Sons of Samson that the strands were 300-pounds and could resist the pull of horses. This picture is form Earle Liederman's 1925 "Muscle Building." This is natural muscle at its finest. I’ve often wondered about the relationship between strandpulling and steel bending, I believe the effect of exercising muscles with strands may be similar to bending steel.  If this picture motivates you to train with cables/strands, this one of the few modern manuals available:   "Professional Cable Course"  by Fred Crivello.  You can also buy modern Lifeline's rubber tubing "Strands" at Megafitness.  See Lifelines Chest Expander , Power Push Up 2 , Lateral Resistor 1 , Lateral Resistor 2 , also at MegaFitness.

The Vitruvian Man

This is Da Vinci's Vitruvian Man. I'd thought I'd throw it in to illustrate "classical" proportions.  For those who have not stumbled upon my Limitless Hand Power page, Da Vinci was widely known as being able to bend horseshoes.  I first learned about Da Vinci's strongman abilities from the book How to Think like Leonardo da Vinci available from Amazon.


Earle Liederman


I am embarrassed that I did not place Earle Liederman in the Gallery of Ironmen sooner.  I had been searching for a picture that was not so common, this was taken from the front of his classic 1925 classic, "Secrets of Strength."  Earle Liederman is probably my favorite author among the old timers.  See this special tribute to his courses here.  The three photographs above are from his books.  I own "Muscle Building" as well and it is also excellent, printed in very high quality for the day (1926).  For wrestling fans, I have also seen a copy of Liederman's "The Science of Wrestling and The Art of Jiu-Jitsu" and it has the same high standards as the others.

  See current used books by Earle Liederman at Abebooks or visit Bigsteel's Rare Books page.


Continue to the Gallery of Ironmen VII

Text Copyright, Tom Black February 2001.