A celebration today of Henri Brustad (1844-1899), the Norwegian Hercules. Born on the Island of Ytteroy, Norway, Brustad was to grow to a height of seven and a half feet tall and travel with shows in his homeland before coming to the U.S. and touring with Barnum and Bailey. A later Norwegian giant, Johan Assen later claimed Brustad for his grandfather but it turns out to have been bunkum. Brustad died at age 45, presumably as a result of his acromegaly.
To learn more about the history of the variety arts, consult No Applause, Just Throw Money: The Book That Made Vaudeville Famous, available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and wherever nutty books are sold.