The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #48893   Message #786857
Posted By: John Minear
18-Sep-02 - 02:30 PM
Thread Name: Origin: Limber Jim
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Limber Jim: History & Lyrics
A footnote on "Limber Jims". I just returned from a quick trip over to Berea, Kentucky, and in one of the craft stores there, they had a toy that they called a "Limber Jim". It is not the same thing as a "Jumping Jack", at least in that part of the country, which is not too far south of Cincinnati, the location of Lafcadio Hearn's "Limber Jim" song. This toy was composed of two sticks of wood joined by a cross bar in the middle and bands of string tying both ends. Threaded on the top string was a little wooden guy, all jointed at the elbows and legs, etc. When you squeezed the bottom half of the this thing it caused him to do flip-flops and somersaults on the top, like a gymnist on parallel bars. Quite amazing. He could do forward and backward flips and of course was quite "limber". I remember one of the references above was to contortionism. I guess gymnastics would be another one.