On December 10, 1810, in a muddy field around 25 miles from London, a fight took place that was so dramatic, controversial, and ferocious that it continues to haunt the imagination of boxing more than 200 years later.A long-form article in Grantland tells the story of freed American slave and boxer Tom Molineaux in England of the early 19th century.
'Few Americans today can name more than one or two current boxers, but boxing once stood at the center of American life. It has become a ghost sport, long discredited but still hovering in the nation’s consciousness, refusing to go away and be silent entirely. But there was a time when things were very different. Boxing's history winds a thread through the broader history of the nation.'
"When the eminent French poet Jean Cocteau died last October at the age of 74, his obituaries noted that he had followed an astounding number of part-time careers as well—novelist, playwright, choreographer, film director, critic and artist. But Cocteau's journalistic biographers overlooked the most bizarre of his avocations: he was once the successful manager of a world champion prizefighter." - Sports Illustrated, March 2, 1964 [more inside]
Stanley Kubrick's "lost" first movie, Day of The Fight, has apparently been found. Assuming it's real, this 16-minute 1951 reel is the director's debut. Sadly, unless you're a fight fan, that's about all it has to recommend it.
Muhammad O' Ali. Geneologists have uncovered his Irish roots. His great grandfather was an Irish emigree who married an African American woman in Kentucky.