If anybody mentions “Phineas Taylor Barnum,” the first thing that comes to mind is a circus.
More than the performers and sideshow personalities who did all the actions and offered attractions with their peculiarities, Barnum is credited with bringing “human oddities” before the public’s eyes.
He was a crucial figure in the Barnum & Bailey, which eventually merged with Ringling Bros. and became America’s longest-running most famous circus, performing its last show at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum in 2017.
Throughout the company’s 146 years of history, it introduced countless human biological peculiarities as parts of the show. In the 19th century, they were popular public entertainment.
Circus sideshow has almost completely vanished today, but it remains an essential element of America’s culture.
Many performers from the decades have become icons in their rights; one of the most memorable was Isaac W. Sprague (May 21, 1841 – January 5, 1887), the then “living skeleton” inside the big top tents.
Isaac earned fame from a rare medical condition that prevented him from gaining weight no matter how much he ate.
10 /10 Zero Muscle Mass
Isaac Sprague experienced no extraordinary childhood from the moment he was born until he reached 12 years.
One day after having a good time swimming, he complained about muscle cramps. For no reason, the condition was a red flag, especially after the exercise.
Not much changed in the days that followed. Isaac even maintained a healthy appetite.
As it turned out, the muscle cramp had been an onset of illness that caused him to lose weight constantly.
Before too long, his muscle mass was essentially zero. No doctors could explain the nature of the disease.
9 /10 Cobbler And Grocer
Unable to do many high-energy activities in his teenage years, Isaac was pretty much hopeless, and so were his parents.
Concerned about the inexplicable weight loss, the parents took him to the best doctors they could find, but medical professionals were as baffled as anybody else.
Isaac could not get a job, so he apprenticed under his father as a grocer and cobbler instead.
Although he could do some activities one short moment at a time, the job grew to be too physically demanding. His energy is depleted before any work is done.