Nathaniel S. Fleischer founded The Ring magazine in 1922, along with promoter Tex Rickard and partners Ike Dorgan, Madison Square Garden secretary-treasurer Frank Coultry, and I. C. Brenner of Golfers Magazine. Fleischer acquired sole ownership of the publication in 1929 and devoted the rest of his life to it. The Ring, the self-proclaimed "Bible of Boxing," is still in publication to this day. It is the oldest sports publication in the United States.
Fleischer was considered by many as the world’s most influential boxing authority and historian during his day.
Nat Fleischer was born in New York on November 3, 1887. Fleischer grew up participating in a variety of sports, including boxing. He graduated from City College of New York in 1908, then worked for the New York Press while pursuing studies at New York University. He left NYU after causing an explosion in the chemistry lab.
Fleischer eventually became sports editor of the New York Press and, when the newspaper merged with the Morning Sun, Fleischer became sports editor of the reconstituted Sun Press. As the paper’s owner, Frank A. Munsey, bought a succession of newspapers, Fleischer became sports editor of each until 1929, when he left to devote full attention to his magazine. The Ring quickly became the authoritative voice on boxing.
Inspired by Walter Camp's annual All-America football team, Fleischer pioneered the concept of boxing rankings and published the very first of its kind in the February 1925 issue.
Fleischer wrote more than 40 million words during his career. He authored 57 books on boxing and, starting in 1941, annually published The Ring Record Book.
He created The Ring's Hall of Fame in 1954, which was the first "universal" boxing hall of fame.
Fleischer also refereed and judged more than a thousand fights. In addition, he participated in awarding championship belts and assisted in establishing boxing commissions throughout the world.
Fleischer died on June 25, 1972. His last issue as editor and publisher of The Ring was the September 1972 issue.
Based upon all these accomplishments, Fleischer was among the inaugural inductees named to the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 1990. He was also inducted into the International Jewish Sports Hall of Fame.