Paul Bragg

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Paul Bragg
BornFebruary 6, 1895
Batesville, Indiana
DiedDecember 7, 1976 (aged 81)
Miami Beach, FL
NationalityAmerican
FieldsNutrition
InstitutionsBragg Health Center
Health Center of Los Angeles
YMCA
 
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Paul Bragg
BornFebruary 6, 1895
Batesville, Indiana
DiedDecember 7, 1976 (aged 81)
Miami Beach, FL
NationalityAmerican
FieldsNutrition
InstitutionsBragg Health Center
Health Center of Los Angeles
YMCA

Paul Bragg (February 6, 1895 – December 7, 1976), nutritionist, was a pioneer in America’s wellness movement.[1]

Contents

Early life

Born as Paul Chappius Bragg, Bragg claimed he was born in 1881 in Fairfax County, Virginia [2], but genealogical research indicates he was born on February 6, 1895 in Batesville, Indiana. He was probably named after his father's younger brother, Paul L. Bragg (who died in childhood and was enumerated at age 1 in the U.S. 1870 Census for Wayne County, Indiana).

Bragg grew up in Washington, D.C. with his parents, Robert Elton Bragg (1866-1944) and Caroline (Chappius) Bragg (1859-1934). He had two brothers, James Elton and John Harrison Bragg. His father was employed by the U.S. Printing Office. After graduating from high school Bragg enlisted in the Washington, D.C., National Guard for three years, as is shown on his World War I draft registration card).

In 1915 Bragg married Neva Parnin at the Chapel of St. Barnabas in New York City [3]. They moved to Indianapolis, where Bragg became an agent with The Metropolitan Life Insurance Company.

Several years later, Bragg returned to the East Coast and was employed by various YMCAs & school districts in physical or athletic director capacities.

In 1921 Bragg and his family, now also including two young daughters, Neva Pauline/Polly and Lorraine Agnes Bragg (both born in Washington, D.C. on 10/14/1917 & 10/3/1919, respectively), came to California, where Paul was again employed by the YMCA (Los Angeles Times, 9/28/1921). Son, Robert Elton, was born in Los Angeles County on March 25, 1922. It is unknown how long Bragg stayed with the Los Angeles "Y", but in 1924 he was a physical education teacher at Redondo Union High School, Redondo Beach, CA.

Circa 1926, Paul Bragg apparently left paid employment and became an entrepreneur in the health field, first by opening an establishment on N. 7th Street, Los Angeles, called "Health Center of Los Angeles" and then, in 1928, "Bragg Health Center" on South Hill Street, Los Angeles. Likely to publicize these businesses, he also wrote a weekly health column (in the early days they were "advertorials") in The Los Angeles Times from 1926 to 1928 which he sometimes called "Newslets" and other times "Health Notes". The health services that business endeavors offered are described in the advertorials and columns.

1929 was the beginning of Paul Bragg's health lecture tours where he went to various American cities (for instance, Oakland, CA and San Antonio & Dallas, TX in 1929), rented a facility, advertised heavily, then gave a series of lectures—usually over a period of five or six consecutive evenings. His lectures were free, but he did charge a fee for post-lecture private consultation. ($20 circa 1935 according to testimony in a Maryland court case against him).

1929 was also the copyright year of the first health book attributed to Paul Bragg as author, "Cure Yourself". Since book stores or book departments in retail stores in that era were usually only accessible in the more highly populated areas, another purpose of Bragg's lecture tours was most likely to promote and sell his books.

During the Braggs' first decade in California, Paul & Neva Bragg divorced [4], and in the 1930 U.S. Census (which is the last census currently of public record until the 1940 one becomes available in 2012), Neva & her new husband, August Busch, were shown living with the three Bragg children in Los Angeles, CA.

The Florida Marriage Index documents the marriage of Paul Bragg and Betty Brownlee (born Gertrude Elizabeth Brownlee 6 July 1902, Eau Claire, WI) on 17 Feb. 1930 in Clearwater, Pinellas County, Florida. However, the following year, Gertrude Elizabeth Bragg filed for divorce against Paul C. Bragg in Los Angeles County Superior Court [5], which Divorce Decree was granted in January 1932 [6]. There is currently no indication that Paul Bragg ever remarried.

There is no record of Paul Bragg being counted in the 1930 U.S. Census, although Burbank, CA city directories of the time reflect his residence in that city from 1935 to 1954, and that his food manufacturing company, Live Food Products, Inc., was also located there during that period. Subsequently he relocated to Desert Hot Springs, CA, and later in the 1960s, at least part-time, to Hawaii.

Healthy Lifestyle Legacy

Bragg advocated using deep breathing, water fasts, organic foods, drinking distilled water, juicing, exercise and listening to one's body as methods of prolonging life span. Until he died at a claimed age of 95, but believed to be actually 81, he claimed that every human being could live to 120 by following his regimen.

Patricia Bragg, who claims to be Paul's daughter [1] has since taken over Bragg's health empire. According to official records, she was actually his former daughter-in-law, having previously married Bragg's son, Robert Elton Bragg, on 04/19/1952 in Phoenix, Maricopa County, AZ, and divorced him on 03/29/1957 in Los Angeles County, CA. [7] She has stated that she was legally adopted by Paul. [8]

Some of his achievements

Bragg was the inspiration and personal health and fitness advisor to top Olympic stars from 3-time swimming Gold Medalist Murray Rose to 4-time track Gold Medalist Betty Cuthbert of Australia, his relative (pole-vaulting Gold Medalist), Don Bragg and countless others. Jack LaLanne, the original TV Fitness King said, “Bragg saved my life at age 15 when I attended the Bragg Crusade in Oakland, California.[9]

Paul Bragg also wrote many successful books, such as "The Miracle of Fasting", as well as the "Live Food Cook Book and Menus" (Hollywood, California: Live Food Products, Inc., 1930).

Death

Bragg died in Miami Beach, Florida on December 7th, 1976.

References

  1. ^ a b Bragg Live Foods & Health Books - Pioneering Health Since 1912
  2. ^ Dr. Paul Bragg, 94, Turns the Actuarial Tables: 'I Have An Ageless, Tireless, Painless Body'"People" Magazine, 8/11/1975
  3. ^ Washington Post 11/22/1915
  4. ^ Los Angeles Times, 9/26/1928, p. 24
  5. ^ Los Angeles Times 05 Dec. 1931
  6. ^ Los Angeles Times 12 Jan. 1932
  7. ^ Public Records, L. A. County Case No. D490122)
  8. ^ Pignataro, Anthony (28 February 2008). "In the Name of the 'Father'". Maui Time Weekly. http://www.mauitime.com/Articles-i-2008-02-28-175065.112113_In_the_Name_of_the_Father.html. Retrieved 05 June 2011. 
  9. ^ Bragg Live Foods< inc. website (http://bragg.com/about/paul.html)

External links