Great equipment practically begs to be used and I would say that would definitely be the case here. These classic Globe Barbells, Dumbbells, Kettlebells and Blockweights from a century ago can be found in a Polish Museum.
Axle Öfverstén was a Swedish strongman who performed with the Carl Busch and Mosebacke Circuses. His signature feat was to lift a horse, and as you can see, he also had excellent taste in equipment. Öfverstén’s protégé, Oscar Wahlund also went on to become a famous strongman.
Here’s Joe Weider, The ‘Master Blaster’ himself lifting a pretty awesome globe barbell at a weightlifter gathering in Montreal sometime in the 1930’s. The only weight stated was “over 200 pounds.”
Another look at the great Russian Circus strongman Vsevolod Kherts and his incredible 300+ lb. neck bridging, this time, from another angle. And check out that nifty globe barbell rack in the background.
Unfortunately we haven’t found much in our files on Gaston de Paris but muscling out a 20 kg blockweight, as he is doing here, is no small feat. Based on that accomplishment, he would have to have been fairly proficient. He clearly has excellent taste in equipment otherwise.
You may know that “The Preem” Primo Carnera was the Heavyweight boxing Champion of the world from 1933-1934 but you probably didn’t know that he was also a performing strongman as well. He achieved a one-hand snatch of 220 pounds and could clean and jerk over 300 ~ pretty good for someone who was 6’6″.
A look at the great Estonian strongman/wrestler Georg Lurich giving a few friends “a lift” in the wrestler’s bridge, sometime around 1910. As someone who has a little experience with bridging with additional (human) weight, I can tell you that this feat is as impressive as they come.
Performing strongmen used to be a common sight in many big cities. Here’s a rare shot from a Paris sidewalk of a strongman having a few onlookers lift a globe barbell to his shoulders so he can walk with it, circa 1950. Look closely and you’ll notice there’s four additional french block weights tied to the bar. His other outstanding equipment: a few globe dumbbells, a few globe barbells, more blockweights and even a baltass all sit in the foreground.