1870 in sports

1870 in sports describes the year's events in world sport.

Years in sports: 1867 1868 1869 1870 1871 1872 1873
Centuries: 18th century · 19th century · 20th century
Decades: 1840s 1850s 1860s 1870s 1880s 1890s 1900s
Years: 1867 1868 1869 1870 1871 1872 1873

American footballEdit

College championship


Association footballEdit



  • 5 March — the first international match between England and Scotland is a 0–0 draw at Kennington Oval but it is not officially recognised by FIFA as there is no Scottish FA in existence at the time


National championship




  • 10 May — Jem Mace returns to competitive boxing and fights Tom Allen, nominally for the now-defunct English Championship at Kennerville, Louisiana. Mace wins with a tenth-round knockout which confirms that he is still the best English fighter. Claims are made on behalf of Mace that he is also the holder of the American Championship and this fight was the first world heavyweight championship bout. Having not fought either Jimmy Elliott or Mike McCoole and strong anti-British sentiment within the mostly Irish-American boxing community at that time, these claims are still debated.[1]
  • 12 December — American Championship claimant Jimmy Elliott is arrested and convicted of highway robbery and assault with intent to kill. He is sentenced to 16 years and 10 months at the Eastern Penitentiary in Philadelphia, eventually serving more than eight years.[2]
  • Elliott's rival Mike McCoole is inactive this year but, with Elliott out of contention, McCoole has the strongest claim to the American Championship with Mace now his main rival.[3]





Major tournaments

Horse racingEdit








The Boat Race

Other events

Rugby footballEdit


  • Foundation of Leeds RLFC
  • Alcock's Football Annual lists approximately 75 clubs playing Rugby School football rules. These clubs have different interpretations of the laws as played at Rugby School.
  • The Nelson club of New Zealand starts to play Rugby School rules, the first club in that country to do so.
  • May 14 - The first game of rugby in New Zealand is played in Nelson between Nelson College and the Nelson Rugby Football Club.[5]
  • In November, an anonymous surgeon writes to The Times complaining that Rugby football is dangerous. The letter fuels agreement in the sport to form a ruling body which will regulate the laws.

Yacht racingEdit

America's Cup


  1. ^ Cyber Boxing Zone – Jem Mace. Retrieved on 8 November 2009.
  2. ^ Cyber Boxing Zone – Jimmy Elliott. Retrieved on 8 November 2009.
  3. ^ Cyber Boxing Zone – Mike McCoole. Retrieved on 8 November 2009.
  4. ^ "Epsom Derby | History, Winners, & Facts | Britannica". www.britannica.com. Retrieved 28 December 2021.
  5. ^ McConnell, Robin (2012). "Rugby Union Football, New Zealand". In Nauright, John; Parrish, Charles (eds.). Sports Around the World: History, Culture, and Practice. Santa Barbara, Calif.: ABC-CLIO. p. 439. ISBN 9781598843002.