- Strong Men & Women acts in the Street, Fairground and Vaudeville -
Kings & Queens of Strenght on stage





1900 -1920


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Famous athletes and bodybuilders often performed on the streets, fairground or vaudeville stages. On the right, we see a typical stage in Paris / Neuilly.
The photograph was taken during the
Parade and shows the Roulin Fréres.

On the left hand side of the image we also see
Apolina, a famous woman athlete & performer. In the middle of the stage, a board announcing "La Belle Apolina" can be seen in strong close-up view.

Suchlike performances were attented by a variety of people, low class & middle class.
The shows were evidently an attraction for children who admired these strong women and men. Even the two police men seems to be interested in watching the performance.

The stage is decorated with
huge posters depicting Apolina. This stage is a typical, temporary, wooden fairground building.

Paris, Neuilly, "Parade" / Roulin Fréres / Apolina


A detail taken from the first Yves le Boulanger & Sèguinel image, further on this page, shows several Culture Physique magazines.
These magazines were widespread and sold, both, to the public and the strong men & women themselves. Strong men, Sandow, Apollon, Brancaccio, Novosielski, Lurich, Hackenschmidt, etc. were often seen in these publications

The stereo images used in these physical culture pages where advertised for sale via these richly illustrated
physical health magazines.


La Belle Apolina"
Very few images depicting Apolina are known today.
Physical Culture and strong acts, certainly was not only the privilige of men! Move mouse over right image


Kings & Queens of Strenght



Children watching the stage and the photographer?
For the little boy, there seems more scenes of intererest while the strong men & women are preparing their stage

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Temporary advertising board on the wooden fairground building of Apollon (1862-1928)

Apollon was a famous stage performer.
The first 9 images depict this strong man in various poses, on-stage and back-stage.

Apollon was known as "
The King of Strenght" seen on his board, announcing:


Chronological list of strong-acts by Apollon








Hand coloured Magic Lantern Slide

Fairground Strongmen & boy.
© Collection Florent Van Hoof

Apollon's fairground building, 1924
The stage is decorated with photographs of famous strong men

Apollon's fairground building, 1924
See detail of board

Two years after this photograph, Apollon appeared as Triton in the film "MARE NOSTRUM" also known as "Our Sea" directed by Rex Ingram.
This silent War movie tells the story of a female German spy who sacrifices her live for her country.

Apollon on-stage, 1924

Apollon on-stage, 1924

Apollon & Henriette Delville, 1924

Apollon & Henriette Delville, 1924

Apollon, 1924 (backstage)

Apollon, 1924 (back-stage)

Apollon, 1924 (back-stage)

Paris, Neuilly "PARADE"
Roulin Fréres / Apolina
Click for detail

Yves le Boulanger & Sèguinel
Click for detail of the Physical Culture magazines

Yves le Boulanger & Sèguinel

Yves le Boulanger & Sèguinel

Bonnes jetant 136 kilos
au Sporting Club de Lille

Apollon performing on the street

Apollon performing on the street

Apollon performing on the street

Touroune Verrerie en 1908

Lèon Seè

Deroubaix arrachant 76 Kilos

La Dumbell de H.C.F.

Rouet & Roret
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he online Media Archaeology Museum version (24) Jan 2017 to Dec 2018 - All rights are protected by SOFAM.be