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Tuesday, April 19, 2011

1894-04-19 Joe Walcott W-KO16 Tom Tracey [Music Hall, Boston, MA, USA]

1894-04-20 Boston Evening Journal (Boston, MA) (page 2)
Walcott Knocks Out Tracy in the Sixteenth Round.
Joe Walcott, the Negro, Knocks Out the Australian Welterweight.

Joe Walcott, the wonderful coal black negro welterweight, short, stocky and wearing a natural armor of skin, bone and muscle, against which blows from the fists of the hardest-hitting pugilists make little impression, won another battle last night. He knocked out Tom Tracy, a white man, and the welterweight champion of Australia, in 16 rounds. The fight took place in Music Hall and was witnessed by about 2000 sports and lovers of the fistic art.

It was one of the liveliest fights ever seen in Boston. Tom Tracy is a fighter from the word go, and showed himself to be not only a game man, but a good ring tactician, too. He was in magnificent condition, great knots of muscle showing through his pink, well-groomed skin, on shoulders, arms, body and legs. The young man was light and graceful on his feet, and avoided some stiff blows by clever dodging.

The winner, Joe Walcott, when he stepped out from his corner looked like a little ebony statue. His jet black skin glistened in the glare of the electric lights, while the top of his round bullet head shone like a billiard ball, evidently having been shaved. Joe is only about five feet in height, and his opponent was more than a head taller, and apparently heavier than he. But the little darkey's shoulders seemed broader than ever. A great ball of muscle appeared in the biceps of each arm when he curled them up, and his stocky, well-knit body was supported by powerful legs.

The referee was "Jimmy" Colville of Boston, and the timers were "Handsome Dan" Murphy for the Cribb Club, "Mike" Bradley for Walcott, and "Johnny" Eckart for Tracy.

Dan Creedon and Howie Hodgkins looked out for Tracy, while O'Rourke and Jack Havlin were behind Walcott.

It was give and take from start to finish. Walcott led with his right at the very start off. Then Tracy got in one on Walcott's head. The black man had the better of it and landed two or three heavy ones before the first round ended. Tracy did no leading.

But in the second round Tracy got in several stiff punches on Walcott's body. Walcott landed on his opponent's face and made some terrific swings with his long black arms, which were ducked cleverly by the white man. Had they landed the latter would have been out of it.

The crowd cheered Tracy whenever he did anything clever. He was undoubtedly the favorite with the spectators. In the third round he sent in a smashing blow on Walcott's nose, which maddened the black man so that he chased Tracy around the ring and thumped him on head and body.

Walcott stopped some of Tracy's blows well in the fourth, but Tracy was an adept in ducking and his tactics seemed to be to avoid punishment rather than to give it. Walcott got in a heavy swing on Tracy's face as the round closed.

In the fifth round Walcott rushed Tracy to the latter's corner and they clinched. When separated there was a lively exchange of blows. The sixth, seventh and eighth rounds were much alike. Tracy feinted with his left a great deal. He seemed to be waiting for a chance to send in a finish blow with his right on Walcott's face.

Both were very shifty. Tracy slipped to his knees once or twice. He was somewhat inclined to run away from Walcott, or to clinch. The referee found it a difficult matter to separate the two several times. The pair appeared tired in the eighth round. Walcott delivered some stiff ones in the ninth and Tracy went to his corner a little groggy.

In the tenth the referee got on to Tracy's clinching. He warned him to stop hooking Walcott, or he would be disqualified. In this round Walcott drew first blood, landing heavily on Tracy's nose. Both appeared rather tired.

Tracy continued game and landed some stiff ones on Walcott's stomach. But Walcott seemed to land several times where Tracy did but once. Tracy tried to rush Walcott in the thirteenth round, and showed up quite fresh. Walcott was ready for him, however, with a grin on his face.

The fifteenth round was a hot one. Tracy got Walcott against the ropes and tried to punch his little head off. It was impossible, of course, but he attempted it. As they broke away Walcott shot in a cyclonic uppercut. Then they clinched again.

Tracy led in the 16th round, but missed Walcott's face. After a short exchange of blows Tracy started to retreat and Walcott rushed him to the ropes. With a terrific left-handed swing the black man knocked his opponent out. The blow landed on Tracy's right jaw, and he fell forward on his face, unconscious. He revived a few seconds later, got up on his feet, and was knocked down again. This time he was counted out before he could arise, and the fight was awarded to Walcott amid the cheers of the latter's friends. Joe left the ring with a broad smile on his face.

Before the big fight exhibition bouts of four rounds each were given by Boyle O'Reilly of Cambridge and William Dally of Australia, and Jimmy Sweeney and Willy Driscoll. Both were rather tame affairs. Young Griffo of Australia was presented to the crowd from the platform. He is matched to fight George Dixon for $1000. Mike Harris of New York was also introduced to the crowd as the only man who had ever got a decision against Walcott in a fight. Harris challenged the winner of the Tracy-Walcott fight. Joe Walcott will probably accept this challenge.

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