It’s always been a challenge to keep track of the history of Muffler Men because over the last 50 years some of them have been sold and moved multiple times! Once such Muffler Man is the St George Utah Paul Bunyan.
The earliest history on this guy comes from inside his left boot where the workers at International Fiberglass clearly wrote the date he was made. January 27 1964 is this guys birthday, which makes him one of the early models made. From there he was shipped to Boulder City Utah where he either advertised for a business or Casino, we are not exactly sure. In the early 70s he was purchased by the owners of a sporting good store in St George Utah. He stood at 968 E St George Blvd where Fox’s Friendly Automotive is today right behind a Sinclair gas station. He was owned by McKnights Sporting Goods and each Christmas they put a home made Santa suit on him to celebrate the holidays. By 1997 the business had changed to a motorcycle shop with the logo and name on his chest. Around 1998 the place again changed, this time to a car stereo outlet and the giant again was modified to reflect correct advertising. In 2000 the business was put up for sale and by 2001 the giant was reported missing. He was purchased my Billings MT collector Owen Johnson who has collected and sold a number of giants over the years. Owen hung on to the giant for a number of years before selling him in the fall of 2008 to the House of Doors in Cheshire, CT. They already had one Bunyan and wanted to put this new one up at a second store location in Salem. However zoning laws kept him from being put up and he was stored in the woods behind the Cheshire location.
Many of you have visited the Cheshire Bunyan and I know a few of you have ventured around back into the woods to take pictures of the second long lost Bunyan. Sadly the years have taken their toll on the paint job but the giant itself is actually in really good condition.
In October 2019, this Bunyan was purchased once more and has now been moved to his new home in McAlester, OK. We have very few details at this point if he will be be displayed publicly or how exactly purchased him.