Joe Walcott vs. Sam Langford

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Sam Langford drew with Joe Walcott by PTS in round 15 of 15

  • Date: 1904-09-05
  • Location: Lake Massabesic Coliseum, Manchester, New Hampshire, USA
  • Referee: Owen Kenney

Langford, a novice fighter with veteran-like skills at the time, put himself in position to challenge welterweight champion Joe Walcott, "The Barbados Demon," with victories against such fighters as George McFadden (for reference, McFadden had a knockout of Joe Gans on his dossier), Willie Lewis, and Joe Gans. Though the victories were very important in establishing confidence and experience in Langford, Walcott was a bigger man, a harder puncher who had reached the peak of his legendary career. The bout took place in Massachusetts and some sources put this down as a title defense for Walcott. Langford, with his younger legs and quicker hands, outboxed Walcott for the majority of the first seven rounds. In the eighth, however, Tom O'Rourke pleaded for Walcott to pick up the pace and carry the fight to the Boston pugilist. This Walcott did and began to rip shots to the body. However, Langford showed tremendous heart and began to connect with well timed counter shots while slowing down the onslaught of Walcott. In the 13th, Walcott nailed Langford with a right hand and followed up with a right to the heart that nearly downed Langford. Langford again fought courageously in the proceeding round after he took a beating, and he stunned and infuriated the champion with a combination. Walcott, so angry by the plucky fight Langford was putting up, refused to shake hands with him before the final bell. They fought savagely to finish the bout in the final frame and the verdict was a draw. Many reporters ringside disagreed with the decision and the two never had a chance to battle once more because the young and growing Langford gradually put enough weight on to become a heavyweight fighter.

Source: "Black Dynamite Volume IV: Fighting Furies" By Nat Fleischer