Joe Roark's

The HUGE library of Iron History compiled by Joe Roark.


Welcome to Iron History with Joe Roark!  

Joe Roark has been studying the iron game since 1957, and by 1970 began a systematic gathering of information on index cards. By the time his first computer was acquired, there were several hundred thousand references to be typed into it.

For a few years he published his own newsletter called MuscleSearch: The Roark Report. By 1992 he was appointed as the IFBB Men's Bodybuilding Historian, and began writing about history for FLEX in his column Factoids. For ten years he contributed to Iron Game History from the U of Texas at Austin. Recently he also began writing All Our Yesterdays for FLEX.

His passion has always been the period between 1880 and 1920, with particular emphasis on the oldtime strongmen of that era. Joe will be offering bits of history for Cyberpump once per week, and the text will be relevant to the dates of the calendar for those events of yesteryear relevant to the coming week.

In this column, readers will also be able to ask Joe questions or comment on his posts.  Note: The comments are solely for interaction between Joe and the readers only -- not reader to reader.

7/1/05: Articles on Football - Part 2

Thursday, June 30, 2005

Jan 1937 p 18 F- no game for delicate lads- Carse
Dec 1937 p 24 F's mightiest men- Canova
Nov 1938 p 28 Strongest man in F- BH
Dec 1938 p 28 What becomes of All American F players?- BH
Nov 1945 p 20 Strength most important in F- SS
Dec 1945 p 20 " " " "
Mar 1954 p 12 York HS wins first F chps- BH
Nov 1954 p 8 Stan Jones: All American F star- Murray
Jun 1955 p 8 Summer training for F with barbells- Murray
May 1956 p 8 Barbells build winning F team at Istrouma HS in
Baton Rouge- Williams
p 10 Ft. Lauderdale HS- Kolb
Oct 1956 p 10 F: stronger players are better players- HBP
p 12 Tad Weed- George
Nov 1957 p 11 Ed Enos- HBP
Nov 1958 p 16 Conditioning for F- Zandt
Oct 1959 p 28 W.T. for F- Neumann
Sep 1962 p 42 Isometric training for F- BH
Oct 1963 p 28 Weights + isometrics= stronger F players- Uhls
Sep 1964 p 18 F at U of Texas- Todd
Oct 1964 p 18 Gerry Philbin- New York Jet rookie- Stroller
Jan 1965 p 14 Strength program of San Diego Chargers- Roy
Jul 1965 p 18 Steve Sabol- Vasieleff
Dec 1965 p 46 Jerry Crumpler- EL
Feb 1966 p 18 Jack 'Mad Dog' Obillovich- O'Shea
Sep 1966 p 26 Randolph Staten- New York Giants- Staclker

Jun 1967 p 18 Bob Grim- O'Shea
Dec 1967 p 36 Jim Carroll- Washington Redskins- Norval
Sep 1968 p 28 Texas A&M W.T. for F- Gammon
May 1969 p 36 Joe White- Starr
Oct 1969 p 20 Jacque McKinnon- Maylen
Nov 1969 p 50 Fitness for F- about Alvin Roy- Leistner
Dec 1969 p 16 In season W.T. for F- Nay
Jan 1970 p 20 Mac Faul 'Bayou Bruiser'- Leistner
Mar 1970 p 38 W.T. and the gridiron (Dale Brady)- Puckett
Jun 1970 p 59 F and Alvin Roy- BH
Jul 1970 p 46 W.T. and F- BH
Nov 1970 p 38 Bob Grant of Baltimore Colts- Starr
Oct 1971 p 28 Squad: W.T. for F- Borden
Sep 1972 p 24 Ron Pritchard- Slater
Apr 1973 p 22 Improving F perf thru strength training- Murry (sp?)
Sep 1973 p 10 Pittsburgh Steelers strength training program- Riecke
Oct 1973 p 16 John Matuszak- Falcon

Jan 1974 p 12 Dick Butkus- Scott
Oct 1975 p 40 Pittsburgh Steelers- Super Bowl champs- train
with weights- Baker
Dec 1975 p 20 Randy White- Sparks
Apr 1976 p 21 Spring training for F- Stafford
Aug 1976 p 16 F W.T. program at Penn State- Jackson
Oct 1976 p 32 Ten of the strongest men in the NFL- Sparks
Dec 1976 p 44 Pro footballers stress flexibility- Jackson
Sep 1977 p 58 Rocky Bleirer- Jackson
Nov 1977 p 52 Alabama Crimson Tide- Jackson
May 1979 p 34 Jerry Mirro- Sobel
Nov 1979 p 46 John Kolb- Dellinger
Jan 1980 p 48 Barry Krauss- Baltimore Colts- sparks
Sep 1980 p 22 Brad Carr- Canadian passage seeker- Sparks
Jan 1981 p 66 Denver Broncos dumbell mania- Broccoletti
Mar 1981 p 70 Too small for F last year?- White
Nov 1981 p 28 Baltimore Colts- stronger in several ways- Sparks
Mar 1982 p 18 Harry Ward- Gunder
Jun 1982 p 16 Summer training for F- Miller
p 24 NSCA: All American Strength Team- Jenifer
Jul 1983 p 30 " " "
Jan 1984 p 58 Frank LeMaster- Hajcak
Nov 1984 p 24 F players need body-guards- Sparks
p 68 Joe Klecko- Hajcak
Jan 1985 p 18 Bill Fralic- Sparks
Mar 1985 p 18 The Arizona Wranglers- Shadron
Jul 1985 p 60 Big Red moves (Cornell)- Sparks
Sep 1985 p 12 Strength training of St. Louis Cardinals- Moore
p 62 Napoleon Ardel McCallum- Sparks
Jan 1986 p 17 All-in-one, Penn State training- Sparks

Posted by TheEditor @ 10:58 PM CST

6/24/05: Articles about football, part 1

Thursday, June 23, 2005

A list of articles about football in bodybuilding magazines, compiled by Joe Roark

Muscular Development FOOTBALL
Oct 1967 p 40 Bio of Bert Wilder � Piephoff
Aug 1969 p 36 Training a f team � DeCola [inclu San Diego Chargers� routine]
Aug 1971 p 43 Powerlift to victory in high school f- Fhepard
Nov 1971 p 16 Pro f Ben Davidson, keeps in shape with weights- Hower
Oct 1972 p 8 Tips on punting f � Darden
Sep 1973 p 26 Principles and exs for passing a f � Darden
Sep 1975 p 40 Power endurance training for f and wrestling � Galler
Oct 1977 p 40 Build explosive power with Pittsburgh Steelers � Riecke
Oct 1978 p 42 Fighting Irish power routine for f � Jackson
Dec 1981 p 48 Resurgent Redskins take the power path � Broccoletti
Apr 1984 p 14 Terry Long � Sparks

Chicago Bodybuilder:
Oct 1947 p 4 The All Anerican stands fast � Segretti
Jan 1948 p 4 Johnny Hordines � Eliason
Oct 1948 p 4 Sid Luckman � Grueber
P 20 Poem �Nature�s Football Game� � Shubert

Feb 1978 p 5 The powerlifts and f training � Keiper
Mar 1978 p 7 The powerlifts and f training � Keiper
May 1980 p 4 Strongest man in f � Lambert

Mr. America:
Oct 1962 p 22 Barbell and f- Weider
Aug 1969 p 14 Gerry Philbin story � Van Zandt

Muscle Digest:
Aug 1979 p 42 Cullen Bryant � Kumagai

Muscle Up:
Oct 1984 p 39 Bodybuilding for f � Bolte

Muscle Training Illustrated:
Jan 1976 p 12 Joe Namath�s f camp � Denie
Jan 1980 p 15 Grid plus iron � Denie
Jun 1980 p 24 Fordham f training routine � Sobel

Muscle & Fitness:
Sep 1983 p 114 Hike your f efficiency � Hatfield
Jul 1984 p 54 Last of the muscle bound coaches � Delsohn
Oct 1998 p 98 NFL: games best physique � Rosenthal

Sep 1957 p 12 Weight training makes f champs � Newton
Mar 1959 p 32 Full squats for f � Murray
Jan 1961 p 10 Weight training makes f champs in Britain � Watson
Mar 1967 p 35 Leg development of f players � Rader
Sep 1975 p 28 Weight training for f � Leistner
Jul 1980 p 49 Auburn power meet- strongest man in f �
Nov 1981 p 30 Develop a strength training program for f � Leistner
Nov 1983 p 45 Weight training makes great f players: Super Hill Gang - Sobel
Jan 1984 p 39 Weight training for f � Elder
May 1984 p 44 How Mark Difabio trains for the line � Sobel
Nov 1984 p 24 How Kyle Brown trains for PL and f at same time - Parees

Posted by TheEditor @ 09:24 PM CST

6/17/05: Contest Results for the WBBG�s Big Apple Area

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Here are the New York City area contest results for the WBBG�s Big Apple area titles:

I am aware of variant spellings so if you know the correct spelling please let us know.

Year: Mr. NYC Mr. Manhattan Mr. Brooklyn Mr. Bronx

1970 Douglas Lowinger none none none*

1971 Josue Rivera Josue Rivera Herman Pacheco Robert Maysonet

1972 Hermann Pacheco Ernesto Jiminez Tony Badal Gene Lumumba

1973 Rafael Olivera none Fred Gallepoli Rudy Whitehead

1974: Fred Gallepoli Sentanos Marcellino Ned Williams Jose Castillo

1975: John Calascione George Joseph John Calascione Herman Pizzaro

1976: Joe Caserta Vidal Pizzaro Joe Caserta Harry Scott

1977: Al Kohler Eddie Davis Tommy Meejom Narcelino Cento

1978: Josue Rivera Jose Rivera Walter Rock Richard Ortiz

1979: Walter Rock Gilbert Ortega John Triglia Andrew Haynes

1980: Gene Lumumba

Year: Mr. Queens Mr. Staten Island Mr. Long Island:

1971: Hollis Keller Leon Brown none

1972: Dan Samuda Gene Lumumba none

1973: Rafael Olivera* * Ernie Bond Rafael Olivera**

1974: Dan Samuda Gene Lamumba none

1975: Glynn McMahan George DeNardo George Karas

1976: Nelson Martin Russell Cunningham Ralph Saccemte

1977: Alfred Kohler Robert Masino Bill King

1978: Ed Silva Frank Rapaccinoio John Marsico

1979: Larry Samuels Lou DiBella Stan Czjakowski

* from 1971 the winners of the Burroughs contests competed for Mr. NYC

**in 1973 Mr. Long Island and Mr. Queens were combined

Posted by TheEditor @ 08:36 PM CST

6/10/05: Letter from Charles A. Smith to Joe Roark June 12, 1987

Thursday, June 9, 2005

Dear Joe,

Forgive me for bothering you, but enclosed is a letter from my brother Joe Assirati- his brother Charlie died recently as you know and you kindly mentioned this in your RR.

Joe�s letter was most interesting since it comments on that Lange article and quotes at length from STRENGTH MAGAZINE and Alan Calvert�s book SUPER STRENGTH.

I was particularly interested in Joe�s noting that bit about Lange breaking the ice with a pick axe to swim under the ice to the other side of the lake or pond or whatever. What did he use to break the ice when he got to the other side? His Imagination? This quite escaped me and makes me feel my mental powers or what is left of them are failing.

I strongly suspect the author of the article did an �Ernest Edwin Coffin� deadl when he put his fingers to his typewriter- he �fanned� it instead of being objective. But then he wasn�t writing for a muscle mag.

The Primo Joe refers to in his letter is his brother Charlie, who passed away in May.

The SECUNDO he refers to is me. Since Charlie and I both had the same first names, we called one another the Italian word for FIRST AND SECOND so no one would get confused when speaking of �Charlie�.

My thought is a good snippet could be done for your next RR on this Lange bit and I am sure Joe would appreciate a mention. He has forgotten more about weight training and physical culture than most of our self styled �authorities� ever knew.

Keep the letter, I have already answered it. Should you wish to personally contact Joe, he lives at: [then gives the address].

Best to you and yours,

Posted by TheEditor @ 07:40 PM CST

6/3/05: Gordon Wong by Joe Roark

Thursday, June 2, 2005

Gordon Wong died May 24, 2005 age 63 esophageal cancer.
Gordon was the brother of Don Wong, publisher of Muscle Digest magazine.
Articles by GW and articles about him:

Muscle Digest:
Oct 1976 p 5 America�s Bicentennial Man
Nov 1976 p 7 Contest cuts without loss of muscle size part 1
p 10 Clinton Byerle, bodybuilding superstar
Dec 1976 p 4 IFBB/AFAB Mr. USA and San Francisco Bay Area contests
p 6 The liver
P 13 part 2: Contest cuts without muscle size loss
P 14 Dale Adrian, newest star
1:5 p 4 How Dale Adrian muscularized his body
p 6 So you think you�re strong- atb G. Maur
1:6 p 12 Better physique photography
p 20 The art of gaining weight
p 28 photo @ - Brownfield
Oct 1978 p 90 Mr. USA
P 95 Venice beach victory
Feb 1979 p 16 GW- a strong businessman �Though Gordon once took steroids (this was a rub off from the beach crowd), he considers the practice unhealthy and a �pain in the rear��.
Oct 1979 p 62 A little music ladies!
Dec 1979 p 64 Exercise blues: how to cure them
Dec 1980 p 97 Silent majority: non-competitive bodtbuilding
Apr 1981 p 86 Tailor made programs
Jun 1981 p 36 Are you a racer or a cruiser?
Aug 1981 p 39 Need not diet forever
p 39 Set up for success
p 54 Mr. Orange County Classic
Oct 1981 p 48 Boredom
Dec 1981 p 98 Alice Tanner, goes for the perfect line
May 1982 p 78 The Wong connection
Jun 1982 p 6 It may be hard, but if worthwhile, it will be done
P 30 Karl Meisenhelder, quiet determination
P 54 Mike Sable, a nutritional about face
Jul 1982 p 3 Judging an Olympia
P 18 Ray Boone, rising fast
P 28 Muscle Scene
Aug 1982 p 10 Photo hints
P 14 John Brown
P Bodybuilders make things happen
P 26 Muscle scene
Sep 1982 p 4 Rory Leidelmeyer, rebel with a cause
P 6 Can we afford to take a stand?
P 30 The best diet
Oct 1982 p 30 Judging is still a problem; everything else is on up and up
P 45 Bob Paris
P 60 Body perfecting
Nov 1982 p 18 The rules shall stand even if hearts are broken
P 30 Muscle scene
P 24 Samir Bannout
P 53 I�m mad as hell and I�m not going to take it anymore
Dec 1982 p 38 NPC Mr. Western America 1982
Jan 1983 p 25 Muscle scene

Strength Training for Beauty:
Mar 1984 p 63 Training partners

Muscle Training Illustrated:
Oct 1968 p 10 photo
Sep 1969 p 7 wins Mr. Los Angeles @

Physical Power:
Jan 1962 p 9 two photos, gained 90 lbs of muscle in 3 years
Nov 1962 p 34 three photos, 4 @

Dec 1998 p 160 GW- Mozee [says he won Mr. Western America. When?]
Winter 1999 p 24 Letter to editor from GW

Gordon Wong contests:
??? wins Mr. Western America???
May 13, 1967 dnp Jr. Mr. California [John Balik]
Jul 15, 1967 - 3 Mr. Central California [Ed Corney]
Jan 20, 1968 - 3 Mr. Los Angeles [Chuck Collras]
Jan 25, 1969 - W Mr. Los Angeles

Posted by TheEditor @ 10:05 PM CST


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