Bitgood rd griswold ct town
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Anyway, I have notes on about 20 new blogs and will do my best to stay on task as we move forward and keep people informed about activities here at the Stark Center. In the first of the new blogs, I want to bitgood rd griswold ct town a bit about one of these additions—an artifact from a unique group of primitive weights which are more or less what Barney Rubble might have lifted—and how we acquired it for display in the Weider Museum.
About 12 years ago, the historian John Fair sent us an article about a little known strongman who lived in rural Connecticut and was in his prime around Apparently, Bitgood also used stones to build a great many smaller weights, but those disappeared in the intervening years by people wanting a piece of history.
The remaining weights vary from bitgood rd griswold ct town estimated pounds to approximately pounds. A contemporary of Louis Cyr, Bitgood, like Bitgood rd griswold ct town, was also a huge man with an equivalently large appetite. Unlike Cyr, however, who traveled widely to earn a good living and undying fame, Bitgood was content to stay at home, work in the woods or on the farm, and lift his crude weights for his own amusement as well as that of his friends and neighbors. However, once I read the article and saw the photos I was anxious to have a chance to see the massive stones for myself.
That chance finally arrived, and so we called Arthur and Mary Anne Nieminen, on whose property the remaining Boulder Bells have rested for decades.
The Nieminens are wonderful folks—real salt of the earth—who must be a lot like the people who muscled a living out of that rugged country a hundred bitgood rd griswold ct town ago. Arthur is a man able to harness and work a pair of draft horses as well as he can operate heavy equipment, and Mary Anne is a proud protector of the heritage in the area where she has lived her life. When we called them, we explained that we had published the article John Bitgood rd griswold ct town had written and that we would really appreciate a chance to see the weights for ourselves.
We took a few photos and had a very nice talk with Arthur and Mary Anne, who told us that although many bitgood rd griswold ct town through the years had tried to buy one or more of the Boulder Bells she had told them no because she believed they should stay in the area where Bitgood made and lifted them. She even told us of her dream to one day find a way to have a small museum built in Voluntown so bitgood rd griswold ct town the bells could be preserved for future generations.
In the months after our visit we told many people about the old stone weights, and one of the people we told was Greg Ernst, the Nova Scotia strongman who in made the heaviest backlift in history—5, pounds—a lift Jan and I were fortunate enough to witness.
Finally, after studying photos of the five weights, I noticed that two of the five were very like one another—and very unlike each of the other three weights. The key to the plan was that even though one of the matched bells would be on display at the Center, the Niemenens would still have a match to the one on display at the University of Texas. The Nieminens are intelligent, thoughtful people, and they listened carefully to what we had to say.
When the call did come from the Nieminens, they said they had decided that they believed our plan would allow Elmer Bitgood and his Bells to be known about by a great many people, which they thought was a good thing. The next thing that had to be decided was how to get the pound Bell from their front yard to the 5th floor of the North End Bitgood rd griswold ct town of the Texas football stadium.
We offered to pay Arthur to make a heavy crate and then ship it down to the Stark Center as freight, and Arthur agreed, with the stipulation that it would be adequately insured. Arthur, as mentioned early, is a very handy man, and he constructed an ingenious rack that can be seen in one of the photos accompanying this blog.
At this moment the majestic, daunting weight is resting in a prominent place underneath a large portrait of the bodybuilder Larry Scott, who in his prime would almost certainly have been unable to deadlift it. Conversely, a pound man who could assume a non-Sumo deadlift position would have to be uncommonly strong to be able to raise such a stiff and unbending weight. Arthur Nieminen of Voluntown, Connecticut getting ready to release the plus pound Boulder Bell from his Rec Vee so that it could be trailered over to the Stark Center.
In any case, the great old weight will have a place of honor inside the Weider Museum of Physical Culture when we open later this spring, and the many thousands of people who will see it in bitgood rd griswold ct town coming years will have Arthur and Mary Anne Nieminen to thank. Plus, of course, Elmer Bitgood. I was told there was a photo on the Internet of him using them, but have yet to come across it. Does anyone know of such a photo?
I have just begun diggin into my Bitgood Family history and family tree. I have spent a lot of time researching my mothers side and am just starting on my fathers.
Interested in making connections with other Bitgoods and sharing info. My mother was Delila Bitgood who was a cousin of Elmer. She had a special interest in genealogy. In with her genealogy info was an original Yankee magazine which featured article on Elmer. I will forward you a copy if you would like. Thank you for the post. Thank you so much for sharing this information.
My husband, Robert Bitgood, and I have talked often about visiting Voluntown in search of the family history. I had done a little research years ago on a genealogy website where another. Bitgood family member contacted me and sent me the very newspaper articales bitgood rd griswold ct town refer to. Thanks again for yet another confirmation of the family history for us.
I lived in Voluntown for several years and saw those bells with several others on the front lawn many times. I was first told the story of Elmer Bitgood by John Saari who I believe wrote the story of which you refer which was subsequently published. Standing between the two boulders I immediately noticed how short the bar was and just about impossible to lift with two hands, especially with someone the size of Elmer.
That begs the question, why were they bitgood rd griswold ct town that way. To lift them with two hands would be considerable but to lift with one?? I would love to see it. My understanding was that Elmer would lift those weights every time he crossed the road.
It was reported that he could pull a single point plow hooked bitgood rd griswold ct town a harness. I hope that you will weigh the stones so that we know exactly how heavy they are. Good for Voluntown, A great little town. Great article about a man I knew little about. Glad that the Boulder Bell will have a new place at the Stark Center! No fascinating magazine or newspaper in my life elicits anything like the level of antipation I felt back in the day.
Maybe all—or at least most—of the hungers of our youth are sharper and, therefore, more memorable than those we experience in the fall and winter of our lives. The exhibition will be a bridge between the anatomy exhibition we had on display from April until Octoer and our more permanent exhibits, including such treasures as the Bitgood Bell, which we hope to open in the late summer bitgood rd griswold ct town early fall.
As for the post by Lorna Bitgood Dorr, what a wonderful surprise and early Christmas present that she somehow saw the blog and was then kind enough to send along her generous offer. My office phone number isMrs. Dorr, and my cell number is I was raised in eastern Connecticut and have visited Voluntown and seen the weights several times. Let me know if you want more information about, or pictures of, Elmer or his brothers. I love stories like this. I find it fascinating how many stongmen and women practice and accomplish truly amazing feats of strength for no other reason than to challenge their own physical and mental fortitude.
Bitgood obviously had a passion bitgood rd griswold ct town just being strong and conquering a challenge. A true stongman is indeed a strong man, in body, mind and spirit. I would class Mr. Nieminen in that group. Thank you for sharing this with us all. When will the museum be complete with all strength exhibits ready to enjoy? The birth I know is is difficult but anxiously awaited.
An interesting aside is the back lift by Mr. I have enjoyed this article and learning of Elmer Bitgood. I look forward to visit and see this monster weight one day. I am nearby, in Jollyville, but have not had the chance to visit since way back when York stopped publishing Strength and Health magazine.
During that v visit Dr. Jan Todd asked me about Andy Jackson and you were busy moving the gym used by UT athletes We agreed that the demise of Strength and Health was a sad thing. FairNovember 11, Shannon DowNovember 11, Karen Bitgood FrazierFebruary 14, Sandra BitgoodOctober 16, Tom LumbJuly 10, Dave HartnettJanuary 12, Lorna Bitgood DorrDecember 17, Kurt W Edeker D.
Richard SorinDecember 15, Bob HornickDecember 15, Leave a comment Your email address will not be published. Name E-mail Comment Submit.