Difference between revisions of "Category:Featherweight Division"

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122lbs to 126lbs (On 3 April 1976, the World Boxing Council introduced the super-bantam class)
122lbs to 126lbs (On 3 April 1976, the World Boxing Council introduced the super-bantam class)
[[1916-09-04 (122/124/126lbs) Johnny Kilbane w co 3 (15) George Chaney, Open Air Arena, Cedar Point, Ohio, USA                                                        ]]. Referee: Matt Hinkel. Although taking place in Ohio, a state that in the main only allowed no-decision contests, this pairing was given special dispensation to be settled by the referee if both men, reported to be inside 122lbs by the Sandusky Register, were still standing after 15 rounds of boxing. With Kilbane using an effective left jab while the southpaw Chaney looked for more solid head shots, the opening two rounds passed by without too many incidents. The mood changed in the third round. Having been broken up for the fourth time, Kilbane suddenly crashed in a right hook to Chaney’s jaw and the fight was over on the referee counting to ‘ten’. For a contest between Kilbane and Alvie Miller on 11 December 1916 at the Opera House, Youngstown, Ohio, the Youngstown Indicator reported that although the latter scaled inside the featherweight limit of 122lbs, the champion’s weight was not announced. This would indicate that the title was technically up for grabs with Kilbane, deemed to have had the better of the 12-round no-decision contest, possibly coming in over the weight. On 26 March 1917 at the Clover AC, Bridgeport, Connecticut, Kilbane drew over 12 rounds with Eddie Wallace. Shown in The Ring Record Book as being a title fight it was made at 126lbs and was not considered as one by the champion. Less than a month later, on 19 April, Kilbane, still adamant that he would only defend his title at 122lbs, received a ten-round newspaper decision over Matt Brock at Gray’s Armory, Cleveland, Ohio, and with the Cleveland Boxing Commission regulating the featherweight limit at 125lbs, Kilbane’s position as the featherweight champion was decidedly at stake when both men were inside that weight. A few weeks later, on 24 May, Kilbane (128) took a ten-round press decision off the 122lbs Frankie Fleming at Sohmer Park, Montreal, Canada, and the latter would have undoubtedly claimed the world title at that weight had he won inside the distance. Inactive during 1918, Kilbane was perceived by the press to have outscored Jack Lawler (125lbs) over ten rounds at The Armory, Charleston, West Virginia on 12 April 1919 and although the match had been made at 128lbs if the latter had won inside the distance his claim may well have been accepted. Britain’s Joe Fox (who was adjudged by the press to have lost on points over six rounds on 28 July 1919 at the Ballpark, Philadelphia, Pa), was the next man to make 122lbs for Kilbane and once again the latter came in well over the championship weight. However, time was gradually running out for Kilbane and regardless of public utterances that he could only lose his title at 122lbs he was asked to make 125lbs for three eight-round no-decision fights in New Jersey, a State who recognised that weight as being the featherweight limit. First came Frankie Burns (nd-w rsc 5 on 16 September 1919 at The Ballpark, Newark), followed by Andy Chaney (nd-l pts 8 on 29 December 1919 at The 4th Regiment Armory, Jersey City) and then Benny Valgar (nd-l pts 8 on 25 February 1920 at the National AC, Newark), interspersed with six-round contests in Philadelphia against natural 122 pounders in Eddie Morgan (nd-w pts 6 at the National AC on 20 September 1919), Al Shubert (nd-w pts 6 at the Olympia AC on 1 January 1920) and Johnny Murray (nd-l pts 6 at the National AC on 24 January 1920). According to The Ring Record Book and various press reports, Kilbane then successfully defended his title in a ten-round no-decision contest on 21 April 1920 against Alvie Miller, winning by a seventh-round kayo at the Opera House, Lorain, Ohio. What is not known is the weight the match was made at, although a local historian and former sports writer, Paul Baumgartner, discovered in a trawl of the Lorain Times-Herald that on 14 April it was reported that Miller had already reached the 123lb mark and would have to reduce further to make the agreed weight. There was no mention of an articled weight for Kilbane, however. At this time it is almost certain that Kilbane could not make 122lbs and one can only assume, as in other contests, he would be only come in at a weight that he was comfortable at. This was supported by an earlier report in the same paper, on 9 April, that Kilbane would be no more than three or four pounds heavier than Miller on the night. Despite that, had Miller won inside the distance he would have had a strong claim to the title. On 2 June 1920, Kilbane (125¼) again met Andy Chaney (nd-l pts 8 at the Ice Palace, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania), before taking on Artie Root (nd-w pts 10 at League Park, Cleveland) on 28 July 1920, both being catchweight contests in which his opponents scaled 124lbs. Later in the year, on 7 October, the promoter Tex Rickard, who was rapidly losing patience due to Kilbane’s refusal to defend the title on a ‘proper’ basis, lined up Britain’s Tommy Noble to meet Johnny Murray (at Madison Square Garden, Manhattan, NYC, New York) for the world title at 126lbs. Although Noble won on points over 15 rounds, the NYSAC, newly formed on 1 September 1920 and recognising 126lbs as the featherweight limit, failed to give the fight their support. Having won a diamond-studded championship belt, Noble’s so-called title was never taken seriously and he returned to England without being asked to make a defence. Two ten-round no-decision fights at League Park, Cleveland in 1921 saw Kilbane up to his old tricks again. Firstly, on 25 May, in the eyes of the press he outpointed Freddie Jacks, who came in spot on the now universally recognised class of 126lbs. For this one, Kilbane was thought to weigh in the region of 130lbs, while on 17 September he refused to weigh in when scoring a seventh-round kayo win over Danny Frush, who was forced to make 126lbs. Kicked in the groin during the first round, Frush, badly injured, should have been awarded the decision and the title, but the referee later stated that he did not want to disappoint the large crowd and allowed Kilbane to build on his unfair advantage. In July 1922, after Kilbane had remained inactive following the Frush contest and was seemingly uninterested in defending his title at 126lbs against a recognised challenger such as Johnny Dundee, the NYSAC ‘officially’ stripped him of the title. That decision was followed by Tex Rickard matching Dundee, the long-term number-one challenger, against the unlucky Frush and the NYSAC announced that they would recognise the winner as champion. Although Kilbane stated that he would defend his title in Ohio on Labor Day, that soon proved to be nothing more than hot air and it was felt by many shrewd judges that the 33-year-old champion would retire following the news that he was now banned from appearing in New York.
[[Category: 1916 Featherweight Title Contests]]
[[Category: Featherweight Division]]

Revision as of 00:50, 9 December 2011

Featherweight Division

The division started life in the early 1860s and although the first man to claim the bare-knuckle championship appears to have been Dick Hollywood, the initial sign of positive action came when England's George Seddons beat America’s Tommy Kelly for the title in Portsmouth, NH, USA on 7 October 1868. Shortly afterwards, Kelly laid claim to the title when Seddons found he could no longer make the weight and by the late 1870s Long Tom Ryan also found some form of recognition as a bare-knuckle champion

As gloved fighting got underway in Britain during the early 1870s it was mainly in the form of championship competitions and claims, and it was not until March 1886 that there was a distance fight at the weight of any consequence. Listed below, is the activity at every two pounds between January 1872 and March 1886, taking in all weights between 116lbs and 126lbs which became recognised as belonging to the featherweight class in Britain

116 to 118lbs: This weight class is first heard of in 1879 when Cocky Joyce challenged George Dove to decide the English title and although they were booked to meet somewhere in London on 11 February 1880 there is nothing in print to say they did. Other men who claimed the English 118lbs title included Harry Solomon (who outpointed Charlie Cheese over three rounds at the St Andrew’s Hall, Westminster, London on 3 January 1885), Sam Blakelock (who walked over Harry Williams at The Bridge House Tavern, Islington, London on 19 January 1885), Dave Burke (who outpointed Owen Hannon over three rounds at the St Andrew’s Hall on 4 February 1885) and Fred Johnson (who outpointed Bill Baxter over three rounds at the St Andrew’s Hall on 20 January 1886)

118 to 120lbs: The first ever glove fight at the weight saw Young Hundreds outpoint Alec Lawson over three rounds (at The Spencers Arms Public House, Soho, London) on 23 January 1872. This was followed by Lawson (March 1872), Arthur Chambers (September 1872), George Cunningham (May 1875), Pat Perry (April 1876) and Punch Dowsett (March 1877) claiming to be the English champion at the weight. Next men up were Bill Hook and Fred Johnson who drew over four rounds at The Blue Anchor Public House, Shoreditch, London on 6 November 1884. Hook then outpointed Johnson over four rounds in another championship competition at the Post Office, Mile End, London on 16 December 1884 before gaining the three round points decision over Owen Hannon at the St Andrew’s Hall, Westminster, London on 12 January 1885. On 29 September 1885 it was claimed that Tom Sterk was again challenging the world at 120lbs, having had no responses to two earlier challenges

120 to 122lbs: Alec Lawson, who claimed to be the best man in the world at 122lbs on 10 February 1872, was the first man associated with the weight class. He was followed by George Cunningham (who challenged the world on 16 March 1878), Jem Laxton (who outpointed Harry Solomon over three rounds at the Lillie Bridge Grounds, Chelsea, London on 30 July 1883) and Reuben Baxter (12 May 1884)

122 to 124lbs: The weight class had first come to notice when Pat Perry challenged the world on 15 August 1877, an action that was followed by Billy Hawkes (June 1979), Owen Hannon (December 1884) and Dave Burke (July 1885)

124 to 126lbs: The English 126lbs title was first claimed by Young Hundreds (who outpointed Jem Cody over five rounds on 20 December 1872 at Professor Alf Austin’s Bloomfield Street Rooms, London Wall). He was followed by Punch Dowsett (who won championship competitions when outpointing Dave Cable over three rounds at the Running Grounds, Hackney Wick, London on 26 July 1875 and Bill Steadman over three rounds at the High Street Hall, Hoxton, London on 22 October 1877). Other men to win championship competitions included Jim Steadman (November 1877), Jem Laxton (January 1979) and Harry Mead (who outpointed Harry Solomon over three rounds at The Five Inkhorns Public House, Shoreditch, London on 30 March 1879). Laxton won another championship competition (outpointing Jim Steadman over three rounds at the Royal Agricultural Hall, Islington, London on 15 April 1979) before challenging the world on 29 September. Additional men to challenge the world were Funny Cook (October 1879), Jem Carney (November 1879), Punch Callow (February 1880), Billy Hawkes (November 1880), Ted Jones (October 1881), Laxton (who again outpointed Jim Steadman over three rounds, this time at The Blue Anchor Public House, Shoreditch, London on 15 March 1882), Con Donovan (January 1883) and Bill Hook (who outpointed Bill Baxter over four rounds at The Blue Anchor Public House on 12 November 1883). When it was printed in the Sporting Life on 2 April 1884 that Hook was calling himself the 126lbs English champion an indignant Mead (having beaten Hook twice) also claimed the title and was followed by Denny Cronin and Jack Williams (September 1884)

Weight Band/Amendments

116lbs to 126lbs (March 1886 to August 1888)

114lbs to 126lbs (With Cal McCarthy coming to the fore in America, by the end of August 1888 the 114/115lbs weight class was considered by many of those running boxing in America as belonging to the featherweights)

116lbs to 126lbs (By the end of 1891, 114/115lbs was once again seen as belonging to the bantamweight class by the majority of Americans)

116lbs to 128lbs (On 27 August 1895 George Dixon extended his featherweight claim to 128lbs)

116lbs to 130lbs (At the end of 1902, Young Corbett, the recognised featherweight champion in America who was increasing in weight, decided to defend the world title at weights up to 130lbs and received fair support in doing so)

118lbs to 130lbs (On 5 October 1903, the NSC recognised a bout between Joe Bowker and Bill King as involving the English bantamweight championship at 118lbs)

118lbs to 126lbs (Following Young Corbett’s defeat at the hands of Jimmy Britt on 25 March 1904, 130lbs should not be seen as belonging to the featherweight class. On 11 February 1909, the NSC formally introduced the eight named weight classes, with the bantamweight class limit being 118lbs and the featherweight class limit set at 126lbs, thus ending English champions at every two pounds)

122lbs to 126lbs (On 3 April 1976, the World Boxing Council introduced the super-bantam class)

Pages in category ‘Featherweight Division’

The following 824 pages are in this category, out of 824 total.


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