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Louis Cyr
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Athlete
    (October 11, 1863-November 10, 1912)
    Born in Saint-Cyprien-de-Napierville, Quebec, Canada
    Birth name was Cyprien-Noé Cyr
    Named by former International Federation of BodyBuilding & Fitness chairman Ben Weider as The Strongest Man Ever to Have Lived ('uncontested and incontestable')
    Died of Bright's disease (now known as chronic nephritis) in Montreal at age 49
    Before pursuing his strongman career, his mother told him to 'let his hair grow, like Samson in the Bible,' and she curled it regularly.
    Touring the Canadian Maritimes in the spring of 1883, he built his strongman reputation, but his promoter swindled him out of his pay.
    After the rip-off, he served as a police officer in Montreal for two years.
    He retired from the stongman circuit in 1888 and bought a tavern on Rue Notre-Dame in Montreal, but grew bored and resumed his career in 1890.
    In 1892, he signed a one-year contract with the Ringling Brothers Circus, and afterward started his own circus, but it only lasted five years.
    By 1906, he had beaten every challenger to his title and began gorging himself, his weight blossoming.
    He began working at a lumber camp at age 12 and immediately impressed his co-workers with his feats of strength.
    He immigrated to Lowell, Massachusetts in 1878 and maintained dual citizenship.
    He entered his first strongman competition at age 18 in Boston, where he stunned the crowd by lifting a 1,500 pound horse on a platform off the ground.
    Entering a strongman competition in March 1886 at Quebec City against reigning Canadian strongman David Michaud, he easily bested his opponent.
    He lifted a 218-pound barbell with one hand (to Michaud’s 158 pounds) and a weight of 2,371 pounds on his back, to his opponent’s 2,071 pounds.
    Showing off in Montreal, he resisted the pull of four draught horses (two in each hand) as handlers cracked whips to get the horses to pull harder (October 12, 1891).
    Showing off in Boston in 1895, he supported 18 men on a platform on his back - total weight 4,337 pounds.
    He has a high school in his hometown named after him, and a district located in Saint-Henri in Montreal is named in his honor.

Credit: Scar Tactics


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