Movember is upon us and it is time to celebrate facial hair!
So what exactly is Movember?
Movember is an annual event involving the growing of mustaches during the month of November to raise awareness of men’s health issues, such as prostate cancer, testicular cancer, and men’s suicide. The Movember Foundation runs the Movember charity event and donations can be made at Movember.com
This is the first in a series of Lists this month paying tribute to the best in facial hair aficionados!
This List is in celebration of the Top Ten Mustaches In American History!
10 General Ambrose Burnside
The American Civil War had no shortage of generals with unique traits and quarks that left their mark on American history. Towards the top of this list you will find the father of the modern day hair facial hair style of the ‘Sideburn,’ General Ambrose Burnside.
In the grand scheme of things, being remembered for a hairstyle isn’t all that bad. There was another Union general that, while being credited with defeating General Lee at the Battle of Chancellorville, is remembered more having literal trainloads of ‘Women of the Night’ brought in to his headquarters (which were known for being a dens of hard drinking, partying and womanizing).
That General’s name is now forever associated with ‘the world’s oldest profession’: General Joseph Hooker.
9 Albert Einstein
Best known for his mustache and crazy hair as much as his relativity and quantum theories, the German-born theoretical physicist Albert Einstein was traveling in the United States of America in 1933 when Hitler came to power in his native Germany.
Considering his Jewish background, Einstein wisely decided not to return home to Europe and became an official US citizen in 1940.
8 Charlie Chaplin
Sir Charles Spencer Chaplin is another name on this list who was not born a United States citizen, but moved here when he was 19-years-old with his pre-Hitler-styled facial hair.
The multi-talented early motion picture star and founder of United Artists wrote, directed, produced, edited, starred in, and composed the music for most of his films, including his first sound film The Great Dictator (1940), which satirized Adolf Hitler.
7 General George Armstrong Custer
If anyone on this list wishes they only remembered for their facial hair, it is General George Custer. (Seriously, how did he eat a meal without getting most of it lost in that rain forrest under his nose?)
Described as aggressive, gallant, reckless, and foolhardy, Custer has become one of the most celebrated and controversial figures of the Civil War. In June 1876, while searching for Sitting Bull’s combined village of Sioux and Cheyenne…..Custer’s battalion of five companies were annihilated.
6 Mark Twain
Samuel Langhorne Clemens, known by his pen name Mark Twain, is known as “the father of American literature”, “greatest humorist [the United States] has produced” and for having one crazy bushy mustache!
Among his numerous popular writings are The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and its sequel The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.
5 Teddy Roosevelt
Prior to his Presidency, Theodore Roosevelt led the 1st U. S. Volunteer Cavalry (known as the RoughRiders) in Cuba during the Spanish American War and was even recommended for a Congressional Medal of Honor (although he wouldn’t receive it until 2001)
Roosevelt’s ‘tough guy’ legacy goes well beyond just facial hair to include:
- being an avid hunter
- Front-line war hero
- Environmental protections (including nature reserves)
- having the ‘Teddy Bear’ named after him
- As far as I know, being the only president to be shot during a speech and not only live…but finish the speech!
He was considered so tough that when he finally died in 1919 of a pulmonary embolism and a heart attack in his sleep, the newspaper commented that “death had to take Roosevelt asleep” because if death came after him while he was awake, he would have simply fought it off.
4 Groucho Marx
The most successful of the Marx brothers, Julius Henry Marx transitioned his already successful Vaudeville character “Groucho” to film, radio and television.
His distinctive thick grease-painted mustache, eye brows and spectacles have since been immortalized by the mass produced novelty disguise, known as Groucho Glasses: a one-piece mask consisting of horn-rimmed glasses, a large plastic nose, bushy eyebrows and mustache.
3 Walter Cronkite
In a world before the internet or even the 24-hour news cycle, the longtime anchor of CBS Evening News (1962-1981), Walter Cronkite was known as “the most trusted man in America.”
His calm voice informed America about everything from the JFK assassination to Apollo 11 landing on the moon.
The American people trusted Cronkite so much that when he returned from Vietnam with a more somber and pessimistic view of the war, President Lyndon Johnson told his staff “If I’ve lost Cronkite, I’ve lost Middle America.” Some believe that Johnson’s decision to not seek re-election can be directly linked to Cronkite’s reporting.
2 Rollie Fingers
Roland “Rollie” Glen Fingers played 17 seasons in major league baseball and redefined baseball’s attitude towards relief pitching and the role of a closer in particular.
Fingers initially grew out his distinctive waxed handlebar mustache to receive a $300 bonus from then Athletics owner Charles O. Finley. He styled his mustache after the players of the late 19th century. Finley was so impressed with Finger’s facial hair that he came up with “Mustache Day” at the ballpark, where any fan with a mustache could get in free.
1 Hulk Hogan
Hulk Hogan, real named Terry Gene Bollea, gets top billing on this list of Top Mustaches in American History for a couple reasons.
- He had by far the most patriotic entrance music of anyone on the list!
2. He redefined the existence of “Sports Entertainment” by using his popularity from the “sport” to branch out into various medias, such as movies, television and, unfortunately, eventually reality television. Next to the Rocky Balboa, no other person represents the physical embodiment of ‘American Age of Excess” more than the founder of Hulkamania!
3 Not only does he have the most recognizable blonde facial hair in American history, he also ushered in the new hairstyle of the Skullet (bald on top, party in the back)….for better or worse
Honorable Mention: Joe Exotic
Ok, now imagine if #1 on this list Hulk Hogan had a skinny, loud-foul-mouthed, crystal-meth-addicted, Carole Baskin-hatin’ white-trash uncle. That is our honorable mention: Joe Exotic!
Joseph Allen Maldonado-Passage, better known as the Tiger King Joe Exotic, rose to fame this past Spring when the documentary series Tiger King hit Netflix at about the same time much of America was quarantined in their homes with nothing else to do but watch this train wreck of a zoo keeper self-implode.
That is our Movember list of the Top Ten Mustaches In American History. What American mustaches do you think we missed? Please Comment, Like and Share!
Also, watch out for our other Movember Mustache lists coming throughout the month!