In the 1920's, Volney Phifer was Hollywood's premier animal trainer and his most successful protégé was Leo, the MGM lion, who Volney taught to roar on cue.
The original logo was designed by Howard Dietz and used by the Goldwyn Pictures Studio studio from 1916 to 1924; since then there have been around five different lions used for the iconic logo.
Jackie (above) was the first lion whose roar was heard by audiences of the silent film era, via a gramophone record. She first growled softly; this was followed by a louder growl, a brief pause, and then a final growl, before looking off to one side.
And therein lies the strength of an enduring logo: I can hear her roar right now...as I know you can.
The creator of this ageless logo is sadly unknown, but one can imagine him or her toiling over a set square and compass to produce this glorious design. The roundel––in earlier years known as the 'bulls-eye' or 'target'--was first used in the 19th-century as the symbol of the London General Omnibus Company: a wheel with a bar across the center bearing the word 'General.'
Its usage on the Underground stems from the decision in 1908 to find a more obvious way of highlighting station names on platforms. The red circle with blue name bar was quickly adopted with the word "Underground" across the bar.