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Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Stanley Ketchel

1910-11-21 The Grand Rapids Press (Grand Rapids, MI) (page 9)
Brothers of Stanley Ketchel Open the Grave.
Family Not Satisfied About Death from Gunshot Wounds.
Relatives Say They Found Evidence of Beating--Young Girls Witness Disinterment.
In strange contrast to the pompous ceremony of the black robed priests and the morbid interest of thousands of curious visitors who gathered in the little Polish cemetery about a month ago to witness the burial of Stanley Ketchel, prizefighter, was another scene enacted at the same grave yesterday morning.

There was no crowd this time, but a few who had been informed of the plans stood by and watched the sexton throw the dirt covering from the casket which sheltered the body of Ketchel and crowded closer as the sealed coffin was raised carefully and deposited beside the excavation. The brothers and the undertaker pried off the lid and disclosed the shrunken form and then deliberately the corpse was examined, the burial shroud being removed to make the task easier.

Air of Mystery Is Thick.

An air of mystery surrounds the disinterment and among the few who know of the incident speculation is rife as to the exact reasons which actuated the three brothers in demanding to look once more upon the face of the dead.

The intention to take the corpse of the famous fighter from the resting place into which it had been lowered with so much ceremony a month ago was kept very quiet. The three brothers, John, Alexander and Leon Ketchel, came here from their farm near Belmont and made the necessary arrangements with I, Karasinski, the undertaker who had charge of the funeral. The little party repaired to the Polish cemetery about 9 o'clock and stood about while the earth was being removed.

Then ropes were placed under the casket and it was raised to the surface. It was opened immediately and the brothers made a careful examination of the body. Five of the little girls who had acted as flower bearers at the funeral were present when the casket was opened and were allowed to gaze upon the grewsome contents of the coffin. They were accompanied by two young women and besides these the only witnesses were three men and another woman.

Karasinski Is Elusive.

Mr. Karasinski maintained a most mysterious air this morning when questioned. "There was nothing out of the ordinary," he repeated time and again and when it was pointed out that the opening of a grave and the examination of the body always is out of the ordinary he replied, "The boys found out what they wanted to and for anything else you better see R. P. Dickerson."

R. P. Dickerson is the man with whom Ketchel went into the west on his fatal trip and who has figured prominently in the affairs of the fighter following his death.

Leon Ketchel was reached by telephone at the Ketchel farm and said to The Press, "We were not satisfied that Stanley came to his death by the gunshot wounds alone. Therefore we wanted to see the body. We found a deep abrasion over one eye which looks as if he had been clubbed. Of course we do not know if this was done before or after the shooting."

The young man did not say whether any further action in the matter is contemplated, but added exhuming had nothing to do with insurance.

No Officials Present.

One of the strange things about the examination at this time was the fact that the undertaker, Karasinski, made a thorough examination prior to the burial. Further than that there was no physician or official present yesterday when the grave was opened. Since Ketchel's tragic death there have been all sorts of stories afloat and it is declared there may be a legal fight over the possession of the property which he left.

According to friends of the family Dickerson declared his intention of paying the entire funeral expenses, but the bills all have been sent to the Ketchel brothers and these are said to amount to considerably more than $600. Whether anything will come of the disinterment to throw new light upon Ketchel's death is unlikely, but the brothers express themselves satisfied with the knowledge secured through their strange procedure.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

1917-09-12 Benny Leonard ND6 Jimmy Paul; Johnny Dundee ND6 Jack Russell [Fairmont Athletic Club, Bronx, NY, USA]

1917-09-13 New-York Tribune (New York, NY) (page 13)
Leonard and Dundee Box for Army Fund

Benny Leonard and Johnny Dundee "played" with their opponents in the boxing show at the Fairmont Athletic Club last night, in aid of the Army Athletic Fund. These lightweights featured the principal bouts of a big card of exhibitions which pleased the crowd.

Leonard proved a phantom to Jimmy Paul in six rounds. The champion jabbed his opponent at will, and in the third round crossed over a hard right, sending Paul down for a count of five. The bout between Dundee and Joe Russell, who substituted for Joe Egan, proved even more interesting.

1917-09-13 The Evening World (New York, NY) (page 12)
Fairmont A. C.'s Show Adds Hundreds to Fund For Soldiers' Sport Outfit
Benny Leonard and Johnny Dundee Furnish Plenty of Real Action in Bouts.
Never before have such rattling contests been seen at a show in which the principals volunteered their services as took place last night at the Fairmont A. C., where Billy Gibson and Tom McArdle staged their big Army Athletic Fund fistic entertainment. The club was crowded. As the fans filed out many of them expressed their surprise at having seen such earnest fights for bouts in which most of the boxers contributed their services free.

The regular Fairmont Saturday night prices prevailed. The gross receipts were $1,019.50, but only $677.71 was turned over to the Army Athletic Fund with which to buy sport supplies for the New York soldiers, as the State tax, amounting to $75.79, and other expenses had to be deducted.

Champion Benny Leonard and his great lightweight rival, Johnny Dundee, the speedy Italian, were the magnets. Leonard had the gloves on with Jimmy Paul. The battle was just as hard fought as any the new titleholder has been in lately. He had his knockout punch on exhibition, as he floored the promising Harlemite in both the first and third rounds, but Paul managed to weather the storm.

In the sixth and final round of the contest Paul was staggered again, but he was on his feet at the final bell. Many thought that Leonard could have put Paul away had he not relented because of his admiration for Paul's gameness. At any rate it showed that Benny was trying to score a knockout when he floored Paul twice.

As soon as Leonard finished boxing he dressed hurriedly as he had to catch a train for Pittsburgh, where he boxed Phil Bloom to-morrow night. Billy Gibson, his manager, was anxious to get Benny into a taxi so they would not miss their train, but Benny told him that he had to go home first.

"Did you forget to take everything with you?" said Gibson.

"No," replied Benny, "but I want to kiss my mother goodby."

The bout in which Dundee figured was the best of the evening. He faced Jack Russo, a crack Italian boxer from New Orleans, who arrived here this week. It was nip and tuck every second of the six rounds in which they exchanged punches. At the end Dundee had a slight shade on his aggressive opponent.

Sammy Diamond and Young Zulu Kid, two fast bantams, fought a fast draw.

The only knockout of the night was that which Paul Edwards, the east side lightweight, scored over Cliff Morris, a colored fighter, who outweighed him ten pounds. The finish came in the second round.

Barney Williams, champion of the army and navy, was to have fought Edwards, but telephoned that he had hurt his arm in training.

Joe Bonds, the big heavyweight who boxes Jim Coffey to-night, was on hand to meet Tex McCarty, but the latter sent word that he was too ill to box. As there was no available heavyweight in the club, the notification from McCarty coming too late to permit Matchmaker McArdle rounding up a substitute, Bonds was compelled to spend the evening watching the bouts from a box.

The first bout brought together Sandy Taylor, colored, and Young Sheldon, the later winning easily after four rounds of fast fighting. Frankie Jerome and Young Sandy, two 105-pound lads, went at it hammer and tongs, with the former winning.

1917-09-13 The New York Times (New York, NY)
Champion Toys with Jimmy Paul--Dundee Beats Russell.

Benny Leonard, world's lightweight champion, last night gave Jimmy Paul, the Harlem lightweight, a thorough boxing lesson and, incidentally, a sound thrashing in their six-round exhibition which featured the program staged at the Fairmont A. C. in aid of the World's Army Athletic Fund. Leonard, making his superiority over his rival manifest to the large crowd from the start, seemingly eased up in his work when opportunities presented themselves for him to finish his rival, or the bout would have ended in a knockout victory for the champion long before the sixth round.

Another six-round exhibition brought together Johnny Dundee, the Italian lightweight, and Jack Russell of New Orleans. Both boxers worked hard and furnished an interesting setto, with Dundee outclassing and outgeneralling his opponent.

1917-09-13 The Sun (New York, NY) (page 13)
"World's" Army Athletic Fund Gains $687.

The boxing entertainment at the Fairmont A. C. last night for the benefit of the Evening World Army Athletic Fund was a gratifying success. The amount turned over to the fund was $687.

The boxing was spirited and the fact of two such noted lightweights as Benny Leonard, the lightweight champion, and Johnny Dundee appearing in bouts on their merits drew a large crowd.

Leonard met Jimmy Paul, a clever New York lightweight, who, while outpointed by the champion, gave a good account of himself. Dundee had as an opponent Jack Rosso, and this bout was full of pepper. The Italian won handily.

In the other six round bouts Frankie Jerome beat Jimmy Sandy, Sandy Taylor beat Young Shelton and Young Zulu Kid and Sammy Diamond boxed a draw.

The receipts will be devoted to the purchase of boxing gloves and other athletic apparatus for the American soldiers in France and in American camps.

Monday, September 5, 2011

1916-09-05 Memphis Pal Moore W-PTS12 Frankie Britt [Armory Athletic Association, Arena, Boston, MA, USA]

1916-09-06 The Boston Journal (Boston, MA) (page 8)
Some Real Class, Though on Short End in Bout With Moore.

By Jack Malaney.

Boston fans are now pretty sure that a real promising boxing prospect is in our midst, in the person of Frankie ('Young') Britt, that rugged little battler of New Bedford. The feature mill of the Triple A's double-windup show at the Arena last night brought the matter closer to the fans' attention, even though Britt did have to take the short end of the decision in his 12-round contest with Pal Moore, the classy bantam of Memphis.

So strong did the crowd get for Frankie of the Whaling City that even though it must have been realized that he had been outpointed and outpunched by a great margin, there was a strong pulling for a draw verdict because of the manner in which Britt finished up, and also stood up before the more experienced performer.

A Classy Perfomer

Bantamweights are not made much better today than this same Pal from the southern section of the country. A fine classy little rooster he is, with a complete knowledge of the boxing game and the necessary ability as a boxer and a mixer. That Britt was able to make even a fair showing against him alone proved that the local youth bears watching. That Frankie did more than fairly well speaks volumes.

At the start of the mill, in the first two or three rounds, it began to look as if Moore both knew too much and was too clever for Ray Cass' lad. He tried himself out both at boxing and mixing with Britt and evidently decided after showing Britt up a bit in these early rounds to stick to mixing. This fact failed to disconcert Britt, though.

Moore Sailed In

Moore sailed in at Britt continually with both mitts flying and scores of times did he land both on the face and body with resounding thuds. But no matter how many times he hit or how hard he landed, Britt never hesitated at coming back at him. In the later rounds Frankie started shooting a straight left out which did a lot of bothering.

When the 10th was reached, Britt was the fresher boy of the two, but he had been too far outpointed to go into the lead. But he gave Moore quite a scare in the three final rounds. At the conclusion of the mill, Britt was unmarked while Moore bore several marks of the encounter, including a badly damaged right eye.

Proved a Flivver

The other end of the double wind up proved a flivver, for Terry Brooks matched against Walter Butler was a poor arrangement. Terry can only perform in one manner, and his style of loop the loop punching never is good against the work of a battler who can punch straight. Both boys may have been trying hard enough, but their results were not at all satisfying to the crowd. Brooks was on the short end up to the tenth, but by his heavy walloping in the last three rounds pulled the verdict out of the fire and got a draw.

Both six-round preliminaries were hot little sessions. In the opener, Al Gerard passed out an awful pasting to Joe Magee, despite the fact that he had a bad hand which he got in the bout with Tony Vatlin last week. Referee Conley got in bad with the crowd on this verdict, but he was very correct. In the other bout, Tony Vatlin got a win over Kid Thomas of Lawrence, in six hot sessions.

1916-09-06 The Evening Times (Pawtucket, RI) (page 6)
BOSTON, Sept. 6.--Frankie (Young) Britt, the New Bedford featherweight, had his championship aspirations punctured by Memphis Pal Moore in a 12-round bout at the Armory A. A. last night. Punctured is about all that happened, but the Whale City fighter can mend the damage easily enough in time. Moore won the decision by Referee Larry Conley, a hair line verdict at the best. A draw would have satisfied the rank and file, but Conley drew the line tight and awarded the verdict to Moore on the strength of a rally made by the southerner in the last four frames.

Britt started out like a sure enough winner, winding stiff rights and lefts to the visitor's face and body that left their impression every time they landed. The boxing was fast with the final round just as speedy as the first, when Britt did his best work. Moore's rally made near the finish of the bout, was of the sensational kind, but his blows lacked the force of those that Britt shot home. However, points are the main features in boxing matches these days and it was the greater number of blows landed by Moore that eventually won him the verdict.

Terry Brooks and Walter Butler opened the double all-star programme in the first 12-round bout. Their match resulted in a lackadaisical sort of an encounter for the most until Brooks got his swings working near the finish of the contest. Butler appeared afraid to get anywhere near Brooks at the start and the way they missed each other brought jeers from a number of the fans.

For a match that pointed toward a real fight fest the battle was a sorry disappointment. Butler plainly showed that he had not recovered from his setback by Joe Welling. Toward the finish of his bout last night Butler was subjected to some harsh treatment, a number of Brooks' swings landing hard enough to have the Reachmont boxer on the verge of distress.

Their bout was anything but what was expected. Brooks, making an earlier start, might have secured better than the draw verdict he was given.

Al Girard of the North End won a six-round decision over Joe Magee of New Bedford, and Tony Vatlan of Brighton added Kid Thomas of Lawrence to his unbroken string of victories, defeating the Machine City bantamweight in a spirited six-round bout.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

1919-09-01 Ted (Kid) Lewis ND10 Mike O'Dowd [Syracuse Athletic Club, Arena, Syracuse, NY, USA]

1919-09-02 Syracuse Journal (Syracuse, NY) (page 12)
Middleweight King Outfights Lewis in Ten Round Bout at Arena -- Ross Defeats Corona Kid -- George Schad Stops Leach Cross.
Mike O'Dowd, middleweight champion of the world, scored a decisive victory over Ted "Kid" Lewis, former welterweight title holder, in the main bout of 10 rounds before the members of the Syracuse A. C. Monday night at the Arena. It was estimated that 3,000 persons witnessed the bout.

After the first round Lewis hung during most of the bout and Referee Jack Lewis did nearly as much work as the two fighters in trying to separate them. It was by clinching in closing rounds, that enabled the former welter king to stay the limit.

In the first round the champion became angered when Lewis struck him coming out of a clinch and O'Dowd tore after his opponent and never let up until the final gong sounded. The title holder did all of the leading and was forced to chase his opponent around the ring.

Lewis managed to earn the advantage in the seventh round which was the only one he had to his credit, while the champion had a wide margin in the remainder of the bout. O'Dowd tried hard to land a knockout, but was unable because of the fact that Lewis would always run into a clinch.

There was plenty of action in the final round and both boxers stood toe to toe and exchanged blows, with O'Dowd having the advantage. Lewis was rushed to the ropes and the title holder rained blow after blow on Lewis's face in this round.

One of the big surprises of the evening was the victory of "Young" Ross, the local bantamweight who scored a decisive victory over Corona Kid of New York in the semi-final bout of eight rounds. Corona Kid had the advantage in one round, while two were even and Ross carried the fight in the other five.

Sam Wilbert of Rome who has been winning all of his fights of late with ease, was given a artistic lacing by Pete Scott, of Hamilton, Ont., who was substituted for Jimmy McFarland, of Oswego who was not allowed to box upon the advice of the club physician.

George Schad, of California, substituted for Leo Kane of Canandaigua, administered a severe trouncing to "Young" Leach Cross of this city in a six round encounter. Referee Lewis stopped the battle in the fourth round to save the local battler from further punishment.

"Kid" Suspicious, colored, of this city, was given an artistic lacing by Barney Summers in a six-round go. Summers battered the colored battler at will and was ready to take the count when the bell sounded in the final round.

In the curtain raiser "Young" Ritchie easily outpointed "Young" Barry in a four round battle, which was full of action.

1919-09-02 The Post-Standard (Syracuse, NY) (page 19)
Middleweight Champion Outfights Former Welter Title Holder in Furious Battle.
Syracuse Athlete Springs Big Surprise in Eight Round Contest--Schade Scored Technical Knockout Over Cross--Barney Summers Outpoints "Kid" Suspicious.
Mike O'Dowd of St. Paul, middleweight champion of the world, outfought Ted "Kid" Lewis, former welterweight title holder, in ten sensational rounds at the Arena last night. O'Dowd was the aggressor throughout and several times had his lighter opponent visibly distressed from the volleys of leaden punches he directed at his jaw and body.

O'Dowd waxed angry in the opening period when Lewis struck him as he emerged from a clinch and from that point to the finish he pursued Lewis like a panther landing deadly blows to the Lewis head and midsection. In the final round, just before the gong rang for the finish, O'Dowd rushed Lewis to the ropes and belabored him with both hands until the latter appeared on the verge of a knockout.

Lewis Elects to Clinch.

Lewis made the battle a slow affair by his continual holding. He elected to hold in the clinches and to run away when O'Dowd pursued. Referee Lewis worked almost as hard as the principals in his desperate efforts to pry the battlers apart when they fell into a clinch. The champion became incensed at Lewis for his apparent unwillingness to exchange blows and frequently braced his head against the Lewis chin in his efforts to get away from those long clinging arms.

Analysis of the bout shows O'Dowd had a comfortable margin in every round except the seventh, when Lewis uncorked a left jab which he varied with a right cross to rock the title holder's head. O'Dowd was plainly nettled in this session and wore a determined look as he went to his corner at the close of the round.

Whirlwind Denoument.

Right and left hook to the jaw in the fourth had Lewis daunting distress signals. Again in the sixth he was borne back by the impact of O'Dowd's fierce attack and seemed near a knockout. The ninth was bitterly contested, with O'Dowd again rocking Lewis with hard right and left hooks.

The final round was one of the most sensational ever wagered in a Syracuse ring. Both men fought desperately, landing telling blows to the head and face with a reckless abandon that made a knockout seem inevitable. O'Dowd finally rushed Lewis to the ropes and when the gong rang was raining left and right hooks and uppercuts to Lewis's face.

O'Dowd possessed an advantage of nine pounds in weight. He scaled 154 pounds while Lewis tilted the beam at 145 pounds.

Ross Whips "Corona Kid."

"Young" Ross, the hard hitting Syracuse bantamweight, spring a great surprise in the eight round semi-final by trouncing the famous "Corona Kid" of New York. Ross carried the battle to the Gotham lad in five of the eight rounds and piled up a big lead on points. Ross weighed 120, while the "Corona Kid" weighed 117 pounds.

Pete Scott of Hamilton, Ontario, gave Sam Wilbert of Rome a lacing in a six period duel. The Canadian got away to a poor start but in the fourth session landed a heavy right to the Wilbert body and from that point to the finish the Rome battler gave signs of distress.

George Schade, a California middleweight, handed "Young" Leach Cross an artistic lacing in another six rounder. The battle was stopped in the fourth by Referee Lewis after Schade had battered Cross until the latter was incapable of retaliation. Schade knocked Cross down in the fourth round.

Summers Gets Verdict.

Barney Summers made a target of "Kid" Suspicious in a six session fracas. Summers danced about the Negro middleweight and landed left and right hook swings, uppercuts and jabs until the latter almost dropped from exhaustion.

"Young" Ritchie of Auburn outpointed "Young" Barry of Syracuse in a four round curtain raiser.

A crowd conservatively estimated at 3,000 persons witnessed the program of boxing contests which were the best staged in this city in months.