Fifty Cents to Attend a
Fight! - March 3, 1835 In the Democratic Press,
dated in March of 1825. This particular paper had an
announcement of an upcoming fight. The price of the
tickets....50 cents! The notice said, "Respectfully informs his
friends and the public, that he intends giving, scientifically,
an Exhibition of the manly and useful art of SELF-DEFENCE,
at Mr. Keating’s Long Room, (Shakespeare Building) on
Thursday, March 3, 1825.
First Fatality to occur in
America - September 13, 1842
NEW YORK -Hot News happening in 1842,
when on September 13, in Hastings, there was a prize fight between Christopher
Lilly vs. Thomas McCoy. Over 2000 boxing fans came to witness
this fight. The fight lasted 2.41 hours, when in the 77th round,
McCoy collapsed and died. According to news sources, the coroner's
investigation of McCoy's remains showed that fluid from wounds that he had
received during the fight had drained into McCoy's lungs and that he had
drown! It was the FIRST FATALITY in an fight that took place in
Hotly Disputed Fight
Ends in Draw - April 17, 1860
In Hampshire, England, John C. Heenen, 6'2", 182 lbs., fought a much
shorter opponent, Thomas Sayers, 5'8", 154 lbs. The fight went
on for six rounds, when Sayers fractured his right arm. BUT, the fight
continued to 41 rounds, when it was declared a "draw."
Both boxers were made champions and both received championship belts.
Bout - The fight was over in 35 Minutes - December 24, 1863 PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER--The
front page reports: "The Great Prize-Fight In England" "King Vanquishes Heenan" "Twenty-Five Rounds Fought" "The Fight Over in Thirty-five
Minutes". Minor report followed by a round by round account of the fight.
Queensberry - Year of 1866 In 1866 in England, The Marquis of Queensberry, a prominent figure
in British sporting circles, developed rules for the sport. Some of
the major rules involved that fighters would wear gloves, no wrestling,
three minutes rounds, with a one-minute rest, recovery time from a
knockdown, etc. These rules were not readily accepted and it took
time for the boxing community to accept such rules.
Bare Knuckles Championship held in
Kenner, Louisiana - 1870! In 1870, in Kenner, Louisiana, there was a bare knuckles championship
fight was held on the banks of the Mississippi River in the southern
part of the city. According to reporting news media there were over a
thousand boxing fans who attending the event. The boxing match was
between two British boxers.
Sullivan Fights Flood
- May 1881
John Sullivan faced John Flood "the
Bullshead Terror" on a moonlit barge towed a few miles up the
Hudson River, just outside the jurisdiction of the New York City police.
The fight did not last too long, and Sullivan came out the winner. This
led to a championship fight match with Paddy Ryan.
Amateur Boxing Makes
It's Mark - March 11, 1882
In March of 1882, it is documented that an
event occurred in
Amateur Boxing and Wrestling Championships of America.
Boxing Trivia: First Fight Held in a Ball Park The first fight held in a ball park dated back to July 4, 1882, in
Washington Park. The great John L. Sullivan KO'd Jimmy Elliot in
Sullivan Continues His Dominates in the
Sport! - August 29, 1885
John L. Sullivan won a six-round decision
over Dominic McCaffrey in Cincinnati, Ohio, for the vacant World title
fought under the Marquees of Queensbury rules with boxing gloves.
Dempsey KO'd Campbell in Oregon
On November 2, 1885, in Portland, Oregon Jack Dempsey fought Dave
Campbell, an Oregon Champion, in the third round by knockout This fight
was under the Queensberry rules, using hard gloves. Also on the card,
they had a bare-knuckle fight, featuriing Larry Sullivan vs. Tom Ward,
of Astoria. It was reported that the fight was bloody and lasted 72
rounds, when Sullivan threw up the sponge. (Quoted in NY Times, dated
November 3, 1885)
Boxers Fight 75 Rounds -
July 8, 1889
believe that John L. Sullivan fought Jake Kilrain
in a 75 round competition....The purse they
receive...$20,000. Source: Boxing Illustrated - W.S. FarnsworthFarsworth
"The bell for the seventy-fifth round had sounded.
Sullivan rushed from his corner and knocked Kilrain down. Jake
was dazed as he was carried off the canvas by his handlers.
The final punch was a wicked right-hander that landed cleanly on the
button." When the bell rang for the 76th found, Kilrain was
unable to continue. It was
staged on the turf at turf at Richburg, Mississippi. A crowd of 5,
000 attended the battle, which was pronounced to be something
phenomenal. The date was July 8, 1889. The purse of $20,000 was
astoundingly large to ring followers of that era, but today is only
small-time money. About the forty-fourth round Sullivan became sick The bell for the
seventy-fifth round had sounded. Sullivan rushed
from his corner and knocked Kilrain down. Jake was dazed as he was carried off the canvas by
his handlers. The final punch Was a wicked right-hander that landed cleanly on the button. The
bell for the seventy-sixth rang, but Kilrain was unable to toe the mark, and his chief second,
Mike Donovan, threw the sponge in the ring. This was the last bare
knuckle championship staged in
the United States and marked the passing of the old London prize ring rules. This was a fight
that would make the battles of the the present day look like pink-tea affairs.
went. About the forty-fourth round Sullivan became sick and his backers
began to get worried. Kilrain Evidently thought so also. "Do you want to draw the
fight" Kilrain asked Sullivan. Sullivan said, "No you
Loafer" and knocked him to the earth. In the forty-fifth round
Sullivan committed a very apparent foul. After clinching with
Kilrain, the latter went down, and Sullivan, falling on top,
deliberately jumped on the fallen man’s head with his knees.
Sullivan’s sickness disappeared in the fifty-second round and after
that gave Kilrain a terrible beating. The Bontonian kept up the
attack from then to the end.