Dec 28, 2012

Good Deed Punished

While the Department of Defense took full advantage of Private Joe Louis's fame and ability to raise money, the Internal Revenue Service keep a running tab on The Brown Bomber. Louis's contribution to the war effort was more than substantial. In addition to serving during his prime fight years, he also donated entire fight purses to the Army. The two Joe Louis- Abe Simon fights were donated in their entirety. After the War, the IRS even charged Louis income tax on those donations. The upper end tax rate during those years was 79 to 90%. Louis's debt, and the government's aggression in collecting, forced Louis to fight till 1951.
A few previous posts on the Louis-Simon fights
Heavyweight Championship of the World
Simon Fearless Against Bomber
The Weigh In
Simon Gets Brother's Verdict

reprinted from March 2011

1 comment:

Anonymous said...


That was and still is a lot of money, and if $1.00 in 1940 compares to $15.57 today (source that is about one million today.