Posted on Monday, February 15th, 2016 by John Wood
John B. Rich was an orthodontist who spent the early part of his training in Paris where he could not help but notice the exemplary fitness level of its citizens. Rich noted that those with heathier bodies tended to also have healthier teeth which makes quite a bit of sense. He brought these teachings back to the United States and established his Institute For Physical Education at 159 Crosby St. (near Bleeker) in New York City. The above lithograph was an advertisement for this establishment, circa 1850, making it one of the earliest commercial gym on record.