Thursday, May 6, 2010

Vintage Al Tomaini Giant Souvenir Ring

One of the coolest rings in my premium ring collection isn't technically a premium, but more of a souvenir. Dating to the 1930s or 40s, it's a giant ring, measuring almost 1 1/2 inches in diameter (the photo below shows its size in comparison to my high school graduation ring). When I spotted it in a basket of junque at an antique store, I first thought it was a baby or large doll bracelet, that's how big it is!


These souvenir rings were sold in sideshows and circuses by giant performers, often right from the giant's hands. This one came from Al Tomaini, a giant who went on to become police and fire chief in Gibsonton Florida, where he and his wife, Jeanie the Half-Girl, ran a fishing camp and trailer court. They led a fascinating life: take a look here.
A great article about giant rings can be found at the Show History website.

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