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International Fiberglass Giant Men Statues (page 2)

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Like the Paul Bunyan models, most of the Cowboys and other Giant Men wear shirts with open-necked collars. The five statues below have buttoned-up collars with bow ties. The Hamburger Men in Kingsport, TN and Kittanning, PA also have this feature.

Giant Man
Piedras Negras, Mexico
This Giant Man seems to have had a little cosmetic surgery done to his face. The statue is apparently owned by the El Terco Maderera 57 hardware store. These photos are from 2008. In 2009, his shirt was repainted green. [map]

Giant Man
Hancock, MA
This Giant Man is located at Green Valley Equipment Company. This statue has been here since at least the 1990s. Previously, the statue was displayed at a nudist camp and held a pitchfork. The "Big Man" also wore a blue ball cap until around 2009. These photos are from 2011. The statue was removed in 2016. It was restored and reinstalled in 2017. For more, see this website. [map]

Giant Man
Los Angeles, CA
2008:
2012:
This Giant Man is installed in front of Tony's Transmissions. He has been painted with a darker than normal complexion and has a pencil-thin mustache. Around 2010, Tony's Transmissions moved to a new location. The statue was moved with them. The car that he holds has been damaged. [map]

This statue and the former Hamburger Man in Malibu, CA were used to produce molds to create statues for Dennis Hopper. Those statues are now located in Dodge City, KS. They were on display in 2014 but then put in storage. In 2016, they were back on public display. For more, see these websites: 1, 2, and 3.

Cowboy
Zephyrhills, FL
This Cowboy statue was originally installed at a pawn shop in Seven Points, TX. Until at least 2001, the statue held a rifle. The first two photos were taken in 2003. In 2004, Auto Air Muffler & Brake City bought the statue. The statue was restored. The cowboy hat was replaced with a baseball cap. Auto Air is now known as Big Mechanic, named after these statues. The company has two other International Fiberglass statues in Florida: a Paul Bunyan in Dade City and a 14 foot tall Giant Man in Tampa. [map]

Giant Man
North Platte, NE
This Giant Man is located behind the gift shop at the Fort Cody Trading Post. The statue was originally installed at a gas station across the street. Around 1970, the Trading Post bought it and transformed it into an Indian. The bow tie featured has been mostly covered up but it is visible in the third photo above. For more, see this website. [map]

More International Fiberglass Bowtie-Wearing Giant Men:
Kittanning, PA
Salt Lake City, UT
Panama City, Panama

The first Midas Muffler shop opened in 1956. I don't know how many of these statues were built in the 1960s for the chain. There are at least three that survive.

Midas Muffler King [gone]
Metairie, LA
This Midas Muffler King statue is located at Clearview Auto Title. His beard has been painted over in favor of a mustache. The statue in Metairie stood in front of a Midas Muffler shop in New Orleans until it was moved here in 1974. Shortly after these photos were taken in 2010, the statue was repainted. He now has gold pants and a black shirt with a fleur-de-lis on the chest. During Hurricane Isaac in 2012, the statue was knocked over and his head was removed. The statue is still in storage as of 2015. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2.

Midas Muffler King
Newport News, VA
This Midas Muffler King statue has been located at Auto Muffler King since the mid-1960s. I assume it was originally a Midas Muffler shop. The statue was repainted in 2007 (bottom photos above). [map]

There is another Midas Muffler King with a crown in Unger, WV.

Giant Man
Escondido, CA
This Giant Man is installed in front of Joor Muffler Service. The statue was purchased at a trade show in the 1960s and has been installed here since then. This muffler appears to be one of the optional International Fiberglass stock accessories. I don't know if this shop was ever part of the Midas Muffler chain. At one time, the statue was dressed as a giant pumpkin for Halloween and in a Santa outfit for Christmas. I don't know if that is still done. However, in 2013, he was dressed in a cap and vest for a local bike race. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2. [map]

Giant Man
Dallas, TX
This Giant Man is located at Brothers Mufflers. The store opened around 1966 as Bud and Ken's. I believe this statue was installed here then. This statue also holds what appears to be an International Fiberglass muffler. The brothers had a falling out and the name was changed to Bud & Ben's. Ken went on to open muffler shops of his own. The name of this shop has been Brothers Muffler since at least 2007. For more, see this website. [map]

I don't know if Mr. Bendo was the name of a chain of muffler shops or if this was just the name of the chain's mascot. The name "Bendo" came from a device developed in the early 1960s that could bend a new muffler tailpipe to match the identical shape of an old one. I don't know if the company that produced these devices suggested that shops buy these statues. There are three surviving statues with this unique hand positions and bearing the "Bendo" name. I don't know if there were others. The right arm is raised like International Fiberglass' Indian model. However, the hand is closed around an iron bar. The bar is meant to represent a muffler tailpipe. These statues all wore a red shirt and white pants.

Mr. Bendo
Chicago, IL (now Blue Ridge, GA)
2001:
2007:
2010:
The Mr. Bendo in Chicago was installed at Ced's Auto Service. In 2010, the statue's upper torso was knocked off in a storm (third photo). The owner planned to repair him. However, in 2013, the statue remained broken. The upper torso was in storage but the head was missing. In 2014, Ced's closed and the lower torso disappeared from the roof. In 2015, the head was recovered and the statue was completely restored. It is now displayed in front of Free Time Hobbies in Blue Ridge, GA. The statue holds a model airplane in his raised hand. The statue is now called "Mr. Hobby." For more, see this website.

Mr. Bendo
Sioux Falls, SD
2006:
2011:
This Mr. Bendo statue was installed in 1963. The statue was shipped by rail from California. His head was damaged in transit. The statue was installed headless in front of the shop for a few months until the head was repaired. He stands in front of Buck's Muffler and holds a tailpipe. In 2010, a driver crashed into the statue and broke his right leg. It was repaired and a leg cast with signatures was installed in the office. The statue was also repainted at the same time. His white shirt is now red. In the past, the statue was sometimes dressed in an Elvis costume but I don't believe he is anymore. In 2017, the business was put up for sale. It's not yet known if the statue will be staying here. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2. [map]

Mr. Bendo
Indianapolis, IN

2001 and 2005:

2009:
This Mr. Bendo statue has been at Ralph's Mufflers since the 1960s. It was repainted around 2009. At some point, the owner made a mold of the statue and created three other Mr. Bendos for the shop's other locations. However, they never were installed due to zoning law restrictions. The store still has two of those statues and the mold which is now in bad shape. [map]

More International Fiberglass Giant Men:
West Memphis, AR [seasonal; gone?]
Roseville, IL [gone]
Lynn, MA [gone]
Cassopolis, MI: 1, 2
Gilford, NH [gone]
Grove, OK
Chattanooga, TN
Levuka, SK [map]
Caguas, Puerto Rico

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