The 19th-century teen girl who overpowered men in traveling shows

Bill Kirby shares interesting stories about Augusta, Georgia history. Here, he discusses Lulu Hurst, a local teen girl who wowed audiences by overpowering any man who dared to accept her strength challenge.

From a great Atlas Obscura article by Tony Wolf:

Within months, Lulu Hurst had progressed from local exhibitions to the vaudeville circuit. Promoted as the "Georgia Wonder" and the "Magnetic Girl," she soon became a top-billed performer, sometimes earning more in a single show than most Americans made in a year. At a time when the standard vaudeville fare largely consisted of singers, dancers, comedians and the occasional juggler or acrobat—and when women were widely believed to be weak and delicate—the spectacle of a teenage girl apparently hurling stalwart men around the stage made for a diverting evening's entertainment.

Lulu claimed to have superhuman powers after being struck by lightning. Eventually, she spilled the beans in a tell-all book, revealing that it was all a bunch of cleverly-devised applications of basic physics.

Kirby's Augusta: A Super Woman named Lulu (YouTube / Kirby's Augusta) (via Atlas Obscura)