Hollywood loved boxing. It loved watching boxing matches. It loved making movies about boxing. Both of these passions converged in the fight film. From the earlies days of motion picture technology, fight fans could see bouts from all around the country in local theaters- even though, for more than a quarter of the 20th century, transportation of such films across state lines was a violation of federal law.
One of the most anticipated sports events of the immediate postwar era was the rematch between the reining Heavyweight Boxing Champion of the World, Joe Louis and challenger Billy Conn of Pittsburg. Continue reading
In 1926, Los Angeles was pugilistic paradise. California was just entering a new era of professional boxing. From 1914 to 1925, bouts had been limited to 4 rounds. Now 10-round boxing was legal. Cauliflower connoisseurs could find a match on somewhere in the L.A. area almost any night of the week. Continue reading
He started as the “Manassa Mauler” and became the Heavyweight Champion of the World- but for a little while, in the mid 1920s, Los Angles could claim Jack Dempsey as one of its own. Local fight fan gathered around their radios listened in disbelief on September 23, 1926 when the Champ lost his title to Gene Tunney in Philadelphia. Continue reading
A professional boxer since 1913 and veteran of nearly 300 ring battles, the reigning middleweight champion of the world was famous for his aggressive fighting style, unorthodox training methods, and fast-paced lifestyle out of the ring. Los Angeles fight fans got to see The Pittsburg Windmill, Harry Greb, in action in early 1926 when he came west to meet Ted Morgan at Jack Doyle’s Vernon Coliseum. Continue reading
In July 1921 Georges Carpenter and Jack Dempsey made history in the “Battle of the Century” for the world heavyweight title in Jersey City, NJ. Images of Carpentier lying prone on the canvas flashed from coast-to-coast almost instantaneously via the new press photo wire service. Five years later, in July 1926, Los Angeles finally got a look at the Orchid Man in the flesh. Continue reading
Born Gerald Slaughter in El Paso, Texas in 1898, Baby Joe Gans moved to Los Angeles with his mother at a young age. He worked as a tire vulcanizer for the Huntington Rubber Co. before taking up professional boxing in 1922. Continue reading