Capt. Smith Cook 1856-1921
KY Circus Giant
LOOKING FOR MORE RELATIVES
Biographical Sketch: SMITH COOK was born in 1856 in Shelby Co., KY. He was the son of Wesley B. and Sarah E. (King) Cook, and the grandson of Rev. Abraham Cook, the pioneer Kentucky Baptist preacher. Wesley and Sarah were also the parents of Amanda, Addison, Simeon, Cyntha, Thomas D. and Ella Cook.
Capt. Smith Cook was listed in a circus brochure with photo as age, 22 years, height 7 ft. 8 in. On another photo is written "KY Giant, 7 ft. 8 in., age 29, 275 lbs."
"An entry in the 1886 Barnum and London Circus Route Book, which lists a Captain Smith Cook as a giant in the side show. There are two other listings for a Captain Smith Cook, a Kentucky Giant, in the New York Clipper. The Clipper was a theatrical journal of the time. A January 18, 1889 issue lists him as being 6' '7" tall and weighing 260 pounds. At that time he was elected Dookkeeper of the Kentucky House of Representatives. (Circus World Museum letter of Sept. 2, 1992).
"Kansas City has the distinction of possessing the tallest policeman in the United States. He is Patrolman Smith Cook on duty regularly in the 4th District but now stationed in the West bottoms because of recent strike troubles. When it is necessary to send a man to quell a riot or do some other act of requiring force and ability to get what he goes after, Parolman Cook is very likely to be sent. He stands 6 feet 10 1/2 inches tall in his stocking feet although not fleshly he weights 285 pounds. This remarkable man is every inch a giant - not a surplus ounce of flesh - no fatty regeneration - just nearly seven feet and 285 pounds of good old Kentucky manhood, for Patrolman Cook is a native of Shelby County, KY a pretty spot in the farm famed bluegrass region." (The Shelby News, Shelbyville, Ky., Apr. 14, 1904).
source of information: Chas. L. Cook, 1st cousin twice
All information is the property of Charlie Cook. Please contact Charlie directly with any questions or comments.