Granddad Was Telling The Truth
WHEN ROGER GRABLE, who lives at 139
Gideon Lane was a small boy, his
grandfather, George Atkins, gave him
a large ring, almost two inches in
"This is a giant's ring." the
grandfather told the boy.
Slightly skeptical, Roger accepted
the ring and put it
However he hung on to the ring, made
of lead or pewter. Embossed on
the top of the ring was the wording.
"Jack Earle - Giant - 8ft 101/2."
THEN RECENTLY, Roger discovered his
grandfather had been telling the
truth. The ring had belonged
at one time to a giant - a giant who
was really named Jack - Jack Earle.
The discovery that his grandfather
had been telling the truth came when
Roger saw a picture in the Gazette,
which showed his giant - Earle -
standing with the late Dr Charles
Humberd Barnard, and Ben Mangoon
former delicatessen owner, in St.
Joseph. The accompanying story
told of the time that the late
Robert Wadlow, the boy giant from
Alton, ILL., spent here during a
federal court trial.
That trial was of the suit that
Wadlow, who was 8 feet, 11 inches
tall, had filed against Humberd and
the American Medical Journal over an
article the physician as expert on
giants, had written about the extra
tall youth. During that trial,
Jacke Earle a circus giant then
living in El Paso, was a witness on
behalf of Doctor Humberd Earle,
whose real name was Jake Enrich was
listed as being 8 feet, five inches
tall. The Barnard doctor and
the AMA Journal emerged victorious
from the trial.
Earle actually grew additional
inches by the time the ring was made
or whether this was a little hokum
by the circus with which Earle
traveled is unknown. The ring
actually was not Earle's personal
ring but was one of possibly
hundreds Earle sold to supplement
his income as a sideshow freak.
BUT ROGER KNOWS now that his
grandfather George Atkins was a
truthful man - just as truthful as
George Washington, whose first name
Timely Observation Frederick W
Slater Oct 11, 1984 News Press
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