Dec 3, 2012

The Legend Begins

On July 4th, 1934 Joe louis made his debut as a professional fighter. Eleven months and nineteen straight victories later, most by knockout, 62,000 fight fans would jam Yankee Stadium to watch the new sensation fight the giant, Primo Carnera.

New York, New York - Primo Carnera, giant Italian boxer and former heavyweight champion of the world, and Joe Louis, hard-hitting negro heavyweight from Detroit, Michigan, weighed-in this afternoon at the offices of the New York State Boxing Commission for their fifteen round bout tonight at the Yankee Stadium. - 6.25.1935

Although badly battered from the first round, Carnera would gamely stay in the fight till it was stopped in round six. The legend of the Brown Bomber was clearly established.
photo of Primo Carnera

This blog has produced 24 posts chronicling the Joe Louis boxing era, many featuring Abe Simon, a Jewish heavyweight of the era; Simon and my mother were cousins. Lately, Allentown political shenanigans have allowed me little time and space to visit Madison Square Garden in the early 1940's. During the next few weeks I will reprint these posts, while still assigning staff to City Hall. One of my attractions to the boxing world is the black and white photography produced during that era. The public would listen to the fights on the radio, and then see the photographs in the newspapers the following day. While reproducing these posts, I may in some instances substitute alternative photographs, all classic images from the age of film and flash bulbs.

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