Tex Rickard was the most famous American boxing promoter of the early Twentieth Century.
His father, a millwright, had moved his family to Texas when Rickard was about five-years-old. His mother was Mrs. Lon Jane Austin, who spent her final years in Seattle, WA (see the August 8, 1930 Bellingham Evening News of Bellingham, WA, USA, for a photo of Jack Dempsey and Mrs. Austin.)
Rickard claimed to have been a cowboy who herded cattle from Texas to Montana and Kansas City. He was Town Marshall of Henrietta, Texas, and a Klondike Gold Rush prospector and gambling house proprietor. After leaving Alaska, he went to San Francisco, then Nevada’s Tonopah and Goldfield gold fields as a purchasing agent for big mining companies, where he opened a gambling house.
He was primarily responsible for building Madison Square Garden in 1925, and then founded the New York Rangers professional hockey team in 1926. Rickard built Boston Garden in 1928. He helped Nat Fleischer start The Ring magazine, and compiled the first annual top-ten-contender ratings for the magazine.
He died January 6, 1929, in Miami Beach, Florida, of complications following an appendectomy.
Source for most of the early facts posted above: Rickard’s autobiographical series of articles, as published January 2 through February 21, 1924 in the Spokane Spokesman-Review newspaper (Spokane, WA, USA).