Bob Fitzsimmons

Robert James "Bob" Fitzsimmons (26 May 1863 – 22 October 1917) was a British professional boxer who was the sport's first three-division world champion.[1][2] He also achieved fame for beating Gentleman Jim Corbett (the man who beat John L. Sullivan), and he is in The Guinness Book of World Records as the lightest heavyweight champion.[3] Nicknamed Ruby Robert and The Freckled Wonder, he took pride in his lack of scars and appeared in the ring wearing heavy woollen underwear to conceal the disparity between his trunk and leg-development.

Robert Fitzsimmons
Robert Fitzsimmons.jpg
Fitzsimmons in 1891
Statistics
Real nameRobert James Fitzsimmons
Nickname(s)
  • Bob
  • Ruby Rob
  • The Freckled Wonder
  • The Fighting Blacksmith
Weight(s)
Height5 ft 11 12 in (182 cm)
Reach71 12 in (182 cm)
Born(1863-05-26)26 May 1863
Helston, Cornwall, England
Died22 October 1917(1917-10-22) (aged 54)
Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
StanceOrthodox
Boxing record
Total fights125
Wins89
Wins by KO79
Losses12
Draws14
No contests9

Considered one of the hardest punchers in boxing history,[4] Fitzsimmons is ranked as No. 8 on The Ring magazine's list of 100 greatest punchers of all time.

Early lifeEdit

 
The birthplace of Bob Fitzsimmons in Helston, Cornwall

Robert James Fitzsimmons was born on 26 May 1863 in Helston, Cornwall, England, the youngest of seven boys and five girls born to James and Jane (née Strongman) Fitzsimmons.[5] Not long before his birth, his parents had moved from his father's native Ireland to Cornwall, where his mother came from, in order for his father to find work as a policeman.[6] Fitzsimmons received his early education at the National school in Helston.[7] In 1873, the family moved again; James, Jane and their youngest five children sailed on the Adamant for the 93 day journey to Lyttelton, New Zealand.[5][8]

They settled in Timaru, a town 147 km (91 miles) south-west of Lyttelton populated mainly by Cornish immigrants, and James Fitzsimmons established a blacksmith's forge in the town.[7] Once Fitzsimmons had completed his education at the Timaru Main School, he took on a range of jobs. He wanted to join the crew of the Isabella Ridley, and do some service as a sailor, hoping that it would toughen him up for a career in boxing, but the ship was badly damaged in storms while still docked in Timaru.[9] Instead, he took on a range of jobs; as a butcher's delivery boy, a carriage painter, striker at an iron foundry, and a decorator, before becoming an apprentice at his family's blacksmith's forge with his brother Jarrett. His time working in the blacksmith's forge helped to develop his upper body, particularly his arms and shoulders.[7][5] During his time working in the blacksmith's forge, there are stories that Fitzsimmons was not averse to fighting quarrelsome, often drunk, customers, and it was suggested that this even boosted business, as customers returned to the forge, hoping to see a fight.[10]

Amateur careerEdit

In the early 1880s Jem Mace, an English bare-knuckle boxer, travelled to New Zealand, and Timaru hosted both his boxing school, and the first boxing championships held in New Zealand.[11] Fitzsimmons entered the tournament, and knocked out four opponents on his way to winning the competition. He successfully defended his title in the subsequent competition.[5][a] During one of these tournament, it is often suggested that Fitzsimmons defeated Herbert Slade, a professional heavyweight boxer who was touring with Mace, but Slade was touted as being undefeated in 1883, and it is possible that it was Slade's brother that Fitzsimmons beat.[13] After these tournaments, Fitzsimmons boxed at least six times in New Zealand, including some bare knuckle bouts, but it is unclear if he received payment for his fights during this time.[14]

Professional careerEdit

Move to AustraliaEdit

Boxing record books show Fitzsimmons officially began boxing professionally in 1883, in Australia. He beat Jim Crawford there by getting a knockout in three rounds. Fitzsimmons had his first 28 definite professional fights in Australia, where he lost the Australian middleweight title to Mick Dooley (rumours spoke of a fixed bout) and where he also won a fight by knockout while on the floor: when Edward Starlight Robins dropped Fitzsimmons to the canvas in round nine of their fight, he also broke his hand and could not continue, therefore the referee declared Fitzsimmons the winner by a knockout.

By this stage, Fitzsimmons had established his own style. He developed a certain movement and caginess from one of the greatest bare-knuckle fighters, Jem Mace. Mace encouraged Fitzsimmons to develop his punching technique, drawing on the enormous power he had gained from blacksmithing. Fitzsimmons delivered short, accurate and occasionally conclusive punches. He soon built up a reputation as by far the hardest puncher in boxing.

Winning the Middleweight titleEdit

Moving on to the United States, Fitzsimmons fought four more times in 1890, winning three and drawing one.

 
Fitzsimmons knocks down Dempsey in New Orleans, 1891.

Then, on 14 January 1891, in New Orleans, he won his first world title from Jack (Nonpareil) Dempsey.[15][16] Fitzsimmons knocked out Dempsey (from whom the later Jack Dempsey took his name) in the 13th round to become the World Middleweight Champion. Fitzsimmons knocked Dempsey down at least 13 times and by the finish left him in such a pitiable condition that he begged him to quit. Since Dempsey would not do so, Fitzsimmons knocked him out and then carried him to his corner. On 22 July, police broke off his fight with Jim Hall after he had knocked Hall down several times.

Fitzsimmons spent the next two years fighting non-title bouts and exhibitions until giving Hall a chance at the title in 1893. He retained the crown by a knockout in round four. He spent the rest of that year doing exhibitions, and on 2 June, he had scheduled a two-way exhibition where he would demonstrate in public how to hit the boxing bag and then how to box against a real opponent. Reportedly, two freak accidents happened that day: Fitzsimmons hit the bag so hard that it broke, and then his opponent of that day allegedly slipped, getting hit in the head and the boxing exhibition was cancelled.

At a public sparring performance on 16 November 1894 at Jacob's Opera House, Syracuse, New York, Fitzsimmons knocked out sparring partner Con Riordan, who was carried off unconscious and died several hours later. Two months later Fitzsimmons was charged with manslaughter but was acquitted.[17]

Fitzsimmons vs. SharkeyEdit

After vacating the Middleweight title, Fitzsimmons began campaigning at heavyweight (the light heavyweight division did not exist at that time). On 2 December 1896, the San Francisco Athletic Club sponsored a fight at the Mechanics' Pavilion in San Francisco between Fitzsimmons and Tom Sharkey. Unable to find a referee, they called on former lawman Wyatt Earp. He had officiated 30 or so matches in earlier days, though not under the Marquess of Queensberry rules.[18] The fight may have been the most anticipated fight on American soil that year. Fitzsimmons was favoured to win, and bets flowed heavily his way. Earp entered the ring still armed with his customary Colt .45 and drew a lot of attention when he had to be disarmed. He later said he forgot he was wearing it. Fitzsimmons was taller and quicker than Sharkey and dominated the fight from the opening bell. In the eighth round, Fitzsimmons hit Sharkey with his famed "solar plexus punch," an uppercut under the heart that could render a man temporarily helpless. The punch caught Sharkey, Earp, and most of the crowd by surprise, and Sharkey dropped, clutched his groin, and rolled on the canvas, screamed foul.[19]

Earp stopped the bout, ruling that Fitzsimmons had hit Sharkey when he was down. His ruling was greeted with loud boos and catcalls.[20] Earp based his decision on the Marquess of Queensberry rules, which state in part, "A man on one knee is considered down and if struck is entitled to the stakes." Very few witnessed the foul Earp ruled on. He awarded the decision to Sharkey, who attendants carried out as "...limp as a rag.".[21]

Winning the heavyweight titleEdit

 
March 1897 Fitzsimmons–Corbett boxing match

In 1896, Fitzsimmons won a disputed version of the World Heavyweight Championship in a fight in Langtry, Texas, against the Irish fighter Peter Maher.[22] On 17 March 1897, in Carson City, Nevada, he knocked out American Jim Corbett, generally recognised as the legitimate World Heavyweight Champion (having won the title from John L. Sullivan in 1892) in round 14.[23][16] This constituted a remarkable achievement, as Jim Corbett, a skilled boxer, weighed one stone 3 pounds (17 lb) more than Fitzsimmons. He out-boxed Fitzsimmons for several rounds, knocked him down in the sixth round and badly damaged his face with his jab, left hook and right hand, but Fitzsimmons kept coming and Corbett began to tire. In the 14th round, Fitzsimmons won the title with his "solar plexus" punch. Corbett collapsed in agony. Fitzsimmons' "solar plexus" punch became legendary, although he himself may never have used the phrase. The entire fight was filmed by Enoch J. Rector and released to cinemas as The Corbett-Fitzsimmons Fight, the longest film ever released at the time. Using her maiden name, it was covered by Nellie Verrill Mighels Davis, the first woman to report a prize fight.[24]

Fitzsimmons spent the rest of 1897 and 1898 doing stage tours.[clarification needed] In 1899, Fitzsimmons fought James J. Jeffries at the Coney Island Athletic Club near Brooklyn, New York. Most people gave Jeffries little chance, even though at over 15 stones (95 kg) he massively outweighed his opponent and was far younger, but Jeffries lifted the World Heavyweight Championship from Fitzsimmons with an 11th-round knockout.

In June 1901 Fitzsimmons took part in a wrestling match against Gus Ruhlin. He lost and went back to boxing. He then enjoyed legitimate boxing knockouts of leading contenders Ruhlin and Tom Sharkey.

In 1901 he published a book Physical Culture and Self-Defense (Philadelphia: D. Biddle). In 1902, he and Jeffries had a rematch, once again with the World Heavyweight Champion at stake. Fitzsimmons battered Jeffries, who suffered horrible punishment. With his nose and cheek bones broken, most would have sympathized with Jeffries had he quit, but he kept going until his enormous strength and youth wore down Bob and he knocked him out cold in round eight.

Winning the Light Heavyweight titleEdit

In November 1903, Fitzsimmons made history by defeating World Light Heavyweight Champion George Gardiner (also known as Gardner) by a decision in 20 rounds,[25][16] becoming the first boxer to win titles in three weight-divisions.[2]

Soon afterward, he went back to the Heavyweights, where he kept fighting until 1914, with mixed results. In 1907 at age 44, Fitzsimmons fought much younger Jack Johnson, during the time period in which reigning champion James J. Jeffries refused to fight Johnson. The bout between Johnson and Fitzsimmons ended in victory for Johnson with a second round knockout.[26]

RetirementEdit

Although Fitzsimmons became a world champion in each of the Middleweight, Light Heavyweight and Heavyweight divisions, historians do not consider him the first world Light Heavyweight Champion to become World Heavyweight Champion, because he won the Heavyweight title before winning the Light Heavyweight belt. Michael Spinks counts as the first Light Heavyweight World Champion to win the Heavyweight belt as well. However, Fitzsimmons was the first Middleweight Champion to win the Heavyweight title and the only Heavyweight Champion to drop down and win the Light Heavyweight title. Fitzsimmons and later Henry Armstrong were the only men to win undisputed world championships in three different weight classes.

Fitzsimmons had a final professional record of 66 wins with 59 by knockout, 8 losses, 4 draws, 19 no contests and 2 no decisions (Newspaper Decisions: 2–0–0).

Fitzsimmons's exact record remains unknown, as the boxing world often kept records poorly during his era, but Fitzsimmons said he had had more than 350 fights (which could have involved exaggeration on his part).[citation needed] It's also possible that Bob may have included his many exhibition bouts in his total.

Death and legacyEdit

Fitzsimmons died of pneumonia on 22 October 1917 in Chicago, survived by his fourth wife. His grave lies in the Graceland Cemetery, Uptown. Having four wives, a gambling habit and a susceptibility to confidence tricksters, he did not hold on to the money he made.

The statue Peace on the Dewey Arch was modelled on Fitzsimmons by the sculptor Daniel Chester French.[citation needed] A statue of Fitzsimmons has also stood in the city centre of Timaru, New Zealand, since 1987. It was commissioned by New Zealand millionaire boxing fan Bob Jones and sculpted by Margriet Windhausen.[27]

The International Boxing Hall of Fame has made Fitzsimmons a member in its "Old Timer" category.

In 2003 The Ring named Fitzsimmons number eight of all time among boxing's best punchers.[citation needed]

Personal lifeEdit

Fitzsimmons married four times and had six children, four of whom survived infancy.[28]

Professional boxing recordEdit

Professional record summary
124 fights 89 wins 12 losses
By knockout 79 7
By decision 10 4
By disqualification 0 1
Draws 14
No contests 9
No. Result Record Opponent Type Round, time Date Location Notes
125 Win 90–12–14 (9)   Jersey Bellew NWS 6 20 Feb 1914   Municipal Hall, South Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, U.S.
124 Win 89–12–14 (9)   Dan Sweeney NWS 6 29 Jan 1914   Athletic Club, Williamsport, Pennyslvania, U.S.
123 Loss 88–12–14 (9)   Bill Lang KO 12 (20) 27 Dec 1909   Sydney Stadium, Sydney, Australia For Australian heavyweight title
122 Loss 88–11–14 (9)   Jack Johnson KO 2 (6) 17 Jul 1907   Washington Sports Club, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
121 Win 88–10–14 (9)   Charlie Haghey KO 4 (6) 31 Jan 1906   Webster, Massachusetts, U.S.
120 Loss 87–10–14 (9)   Philadelphia Jack O'Brien RTD 13 (20) 20 Dec 1905   Mechanic's Pavilion, San Francisco, California, U.S. Lost lineal light-heavyweight title
119 Win 87–9–14 (9)   Philadelphia Jack O'Brien NWS 6, 1:22 23 Jul 1904   Baker Bowl, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
118 Win 86–9–14 (9)   George Gardiner PTS 20 25 Nov 1903   Mechanic's Pavilion, San Francisco, California, U.S. Won lineal light-heavyweight title
117 Win 85–9–14 (9)   Joe Grim NWS 6 14 Oct 1903   Southern Athletic Club, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
116 Win 84–9–14 (9)   Con Coughlin TKO 1 (6), 2:52 30 Sep 1903   Washington Sporting Club, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
115 Win 83–9–14 (9)   Mike Ranke KO 2 (4), 0:15 27 Dec 1902   Bozeman, Montana, U.S.
114 Win 82–9–14 (9)   Steward KO 1 (4) 19 Dec 1902   Butte, Montana, U.S.
113 Loss 81–9–14 (9)   James J. Jeffries KO 8 (20) 25 Jul 1902   San Francisco Athletic Club, San Francisco, California, U.S. For lineal heavyweight title
112 Win 81–8–14 (9)   Tom Sharkey KO 2 (25), 2:06 24 Aug 1900   Coney Island Athletic Club, Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
111 Win 80–8–14 (9)   Gus Ruhlin KO 6 (25), 2:10 10 Aug 1900   Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, U.S.
110 Win 79–8–14 (9)   Ed Dunkhorst KO 2 (25), 2:25 30 Apr 1900   Hercules Athletic Club, Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
109 Win 78–8–14 (9)   Jim Daly TKO 1 (6) 27 Mar 1900   First Regiment Armory, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
108 Win 77–8–14 (9)   Geoff Thorne KO 1 (6) 28 Oct 1899   Tattersalls, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
107 Loss 76–8–14 (9)   James J. Jeffries KO 11 (20), 1:32 9 Jun 1899   Coney Island Athletic Club, Brooklyn, New York, U.S. Lost lineal heavyweight title
106 Win 76–7–14 (9)   Lew Joslin KO 2 (4) 5 Jun 1897   Leadville, Colorado, U.S.
105 Win 75–7–14 (9)   James J. Corbett KO 14 17 Mar 1897   The Race Track Arena, Carson City, Nevada, U.S. Won lineal heavyweight title
104 Loss 74–7–14 (9)   Tom Sharkey DQ 8 (10) 2 Dec 1896   Mechanic's Pavilion, San Francisco, California U.S.
103 Win 74–6–14 (9)   Peter Maher KO 1 (?), 1:35 21 Feb 1896   Coahuila de Zaragoza, Mexico
102 Win 73–6–14 (9)   Mike Connors KO 1 (4) 19 Apr 1895   New York City, New York, U.S.
102 Win 72–6–14 (9)   Al Allich KO 3 (4) 16 Apr 1895   New York City, New York, U.S.
100 Win 71–6–14 (9)   Dan Creedon KO 2 (25), 1:40 26 Sep 1894   Olympic Club, New Orleans, Louisiana, U.S. Retained lineal middleweight title
99 Win 70–6–14 (9)   Frank Kellar KO 2 (4) 28 Jul 1894   Buffalo Driving Park, Buffalo, New York, U.S.
98 Draw 69–6–14 (9)   Joe Choynski PTS 5 (8) 18 Jun 1894   The Boston Theatre, Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.
97 Win 69–6–13 (9)   Jack Hickey TKO 3 (4) 5 Sep 1893   Caledonian Park, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
96 Win 68–6–13 (9)   N/A KO 1 Jun 1893   Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
95 Win 67–6–13 (9)   Paul Loeser KO 2 Jun 1893   Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
94 Win 66–6–13 (9)   Bill Collins KO 2 Jun 1893   Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
93 Win 65–6–13 (9)   Wyoming KO 3 Jun 1893   Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
92 Win 64–6–13 (9)   Charlie Biehle KO 5 Jun 1893   Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
91 Win 63–6–13 (9)   George Dobson KO 3 Jun 1893   Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
90 Win 62–6–13 (9)   Louis, "the Giant" KO 3 Jun 1893   Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
89 Win 61–6–13 (9)   Paul Loeser KO 5 Jun 1893   Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
88 Win 60–6–13 (9)   Dan Coner KO 1 (4) 30 May 1893   Philadelphia Athletic Club, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
87 Win 59–6–13 (9)   Mike Brennan KO 4 (4) 6 May 1893   Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.
86 Win 58–6–13 (9)   Joe Godfrey KO 1 (4) 21 Apr 1893   Academy of Music, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
85 Win 57–6–13 (9)   Mike Monoghan KO 1 (4) 21 Apr 1893   Academy of Music, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
84 Win 56–6–13 (9)   Alexander Kilpatrick KO 4 (4) 21 Apr 1893   Academy of Music, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
83 Win 55–6–13 (9)   Jack Sheridan TKO 1 (4) 15 Apr 1893   Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
82 Win 54–6–13 (9)   Dan Curry KO 2 (4) 12 Apr 1893   Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
81 Win 53–6–13 (9)   Hank Smith KO 1 (4) 12 Apr 1893   Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
80 Win 52–6–13 (9)   Alexander Kilpatrick KO 3 (4) 12 Apr 1893   Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
79 Win 51–6–13 (9)   Jack Warner TKO 1 (4) 31 Mar 1893   Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.
78 Win 50–6–13 (9)   Phil Mayo KO 2 (4) 25 Mar 1893   2nd Regiment Armory, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
77 Draw 49–6–13 (9)   Dan Bayliff PTS 4 15 Mar 1893   Indianapolis, Indiana, U.S.
76 Win 49–6–12 (9)   Jim Hall KO 4 8 Mar 1893   Crescent City Club, New Orleans, Louisiana, U.S. Retained lineal middleweight title
75 Win 48–6–12 (9)   Jack Britton RTD 2 (4) 10 Dec 1892   Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
74 Win 47–6–12 (9)   Millard Zender KO 1 (4) 3 Sep 1892   Anniston, Alabama, U.S.
73 Win 46–6–12 (9)   Jerry Slattery KO 2 (4) 11 May 1892   Miners 8th St Theater, New York City, New York, U.S.
72 Win 45–6–12 (9)   Joe Godfrey RTD 2 (4) 6 May 1892   Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
71 Win 44–6–12 (9)   James Farrell KO 2 (4) 29 Apr 1892   Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
70 Win 43–6–12 (9)   Thomas Robbins RTD 3 (4) 28 Apr 1892   Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
69 Win 42–6–12 (9)   Tom Burns RTD 3 (4) 28 Apr 1892   Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
68 Win 41–6–12 (9)   James Malone RTD 2 (4) 27 Apr 1892   Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
67 Win 40–6–12 (9)   Charles Puff KO 2 (4) 26 Apr 1892   Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
66 Win 39–6–12 (9)   Peter Maher RTD 12 2 Mar 1892   Olympic Club, New Orleans, Louisiana, U.S.
65 NC 38–6–12 (9)   Harris Martin ND 4 1 May 1891   Washington Rink, Minneapolis, Minnesota, U.S.
64 Win 38–6–12 (8)   Abe Coughle TKO 2 (3) 27 Apr 1891   Battery D Armory, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
63 Win 37–6–12 (8)   Nonpareil Dempsey RTD 13 14 Jan 1891   Olympic Club, New Orleans, Louisiana, U.S. Won lineal middleweight title
62 Win 36–6–12 (8)   Arthur Upham KO 9 28 Jul 1890   Audubon Athletic Club, New Orleans, Louisiana, U.S.
61 Win 35–6–12 (8)   Billy McCarthy RTD 10 29 May 1890   California Athletic Club, San Francisco, California, U.S.
60 Win 34–6–12 (8)   Frank Allen RTD 1 (3) 17 May 1890   California Athletic Club, San Francisco, California, U.S.
59 Win 33–6–12 (8)   Professor Jack West KO 1 (4) 1 Mar 1890   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
58 Win 32–6–12 (8)   Edward Starlight Rollins TKO 9 22 Feb 1890   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
57 Loss 31–6–12 (8)   Jim Hall KO 4 (20) 11 Feb 1890   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia For Australian middleweight title
56 Draw 31–5–12 (8)   Edward Starlight Rollins NWS 4 10 Feb 1890   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
55 Win 31–5–11 (8)   Dave Conway KO 4 (15) 1 Feb 1890   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
54 Win 30–5–11 (8)   Dick Ellis RTD 3 (20) 16 Dec 1889   Royal Standard Theatre, Sydney, Australia
53 Win 29–5–11 (8)   Professor Jack West KO 1 (8) 30 Nov 1889   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
52 Draw 28–5–11 (8)   Pat Kiely NWS 4 26 Nov 1889   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
51 Win 28–5–10 (8)   Jim Hall RTD 5 (8) 19 Jan 1889   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia Won Australian middleweight title
50 Win 27–5–10 (8)   McEwan NWS 4 1 Dec 1888   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
49 Draw 26–5–10 (8)   Jim Hall NWS 4 24 Nov 1888   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
48 Win 26–5–9 (8)   Jim Hall NWS 4 10 Nov 1888   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
47 NC 25–5–9 (8)   Mick Dooley ND 4 1 May 1888   Amateur Athletic Club, Sydney, Australia
46 Draw 25–5–9 (7)   Bill Slavin NWS 4 17 Apr 1888   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
45 Draw 25–5–8 (7)   Bill Slavin NWS 4 17 Mar 1888   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
44 Win 25–5–7 (7)   Bill Slavin TKO 7 (8) 5 Mar 1888   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
43 Draw 24–5–7 (7)   Billy McCarthy NWS 4 11 Feb 1888   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
42 Draw 24–5–6 (7)   Tom Taylor NWS 4 26 Jan 1888   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
41 Draw 24–5–5 (7)   Dan Hickey ND 4 23 Jan 1888   Centennial Hall, Sydney, Australia
40 NC 24–5–4 (7)   Frank Slavin ND 4 1 Jan 1888   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
39 Win 24–5–4 (6)   Dave Travers KO 3 24 Sep 1887   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
38 Loss 23–5–4 (6)   Jim Hall NWS 4 28 May 1887   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
37 Win 23–4–4 (6)   George Eager KO 2 (4) 4 Apr 1887   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
36 Win 22–4–4 (6)   Bill Slavin TKO 5 (8) 20 Mar 1887   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
35 Win 21–4–4 (6)   Dick Sandall RTD 4 1 Mar 1887   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
34 NC 20–4–4 (6)   N/A ND 4 24 Feb 1887   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
33 Win 20–4–4 (5)   George Seale PTS 4 15 Feb 1887   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
32 Win 19–4–4 (5)   Jack Bonner NWS 4 12 Feb 1887   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
31 NC 18–4–4 (5)   N/A ND 4 8 Jan 1887   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
30 Draw 18–4–4 (4)   Frank Slavin NWS 4 1 Jan 1887   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
29 Draw 18–4–3 (4)   Jack Malloy PTS 4 4 Dec 1886   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
28 NC 18–4–2 (4)   McArdle ND 4 9 Oct 1886   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
27 NC 18–4–2 (3)   Australian Billy Smith ND 4 7 Oct 1886   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
26 Loss 18–4–2 (2)   Tom Lees NWS 4 25 Aug 1886   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
25 Win 18–3–2 (2)   McArdle NWS 4 7 Aug 1886   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
24 Loss 17–3–2 (2)   Mick Dooley NWS 4 5 Jun 1886   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
23 Loss 17–2–2 (2)   Mick Dooley NWS 4 2 Jun 1886   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
22 NC 17–1–2 (2)   Steve O'Donnell ND 4 22 May 1886   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
21 Loss 17–1–2 (1)   Mick Dooley RTD 3 (4) 15 May 1886   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
20 Draw 17–0–2 (1)   Brinsley NWS 4 1 May 1886   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
19 Draw 17–0–1 (1)   Pablo Fanque NWS 3 1 May 1886   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
18 Win 17–0–0 (1)   Pablo Fanque KO 2 (4) Feb 1886   The Green, Sydney, Australia
17 NC 16–0–0 (1)   Larry Foley ND 4 12 Dec 1885   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
16 Win 16–0   Jack Greentree KO 3 (4) 1885   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
15 Win 15–0   Alf Bramsmead KO 2 (4) 1885   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
14 Win 14–0   Joe Riddle PTS 4 1885   Foley's Hall, Sydney, Australia
13 Win 13–0   Jim Crawford TKO 3 1884   Theatre Royal, Timaru, New Zealand
12 Win 12–0   Jack Murphy KO 4 1884   Theatre Royal, Timaru, New Zealand
11 Win 11–0   Arthur Cooper KO 3 1883   Theatre Royal, Timaru, New Zealand
10 Win 10–0   Jack Murphy TKO 8 14 Sep 1882   Theatre Royal, Timaru, New Zealand Won New Zealand middleweight title
9 Win 9–0   Arthur Cooper KO 3 14 Sep 1882   Theatre Royal, Timaru, New Zealand
8 Win 8–0   Pat McCarney KO 11 14 Sep 1882   Theatre Royal, Timaru, New Zealand
7 Win 7–0   Slade TKO 2 13 Sep 1882   Theatre Royal, Timaru, New Zealand
6 Win 6–0   Jim Crawford TKO 3 13 Sep 1882   Theatre Royal, Timaru, New Zealand
5 Win 5–0   A.Abbott KO ? 14 Jun 1882   Theatre Royal, Timaru, New Zealand Won New Zealand lightweight title
4 Win 4–0   N/A KO ? 14 Jun 1882   Theatre Royal, Timaru, New Zealand
3 Win 3–0   N/A KO ? 13 Jun 1882   Theatre Royal, Timaru, New Zealand
2 Win 2–0   N/A KO ? 13 Jun 1882   Theatre Royal, Timaru, New Zealand
1 Win 1–0   Tom Baines KO 1 Jun 1881   Timaru, New Zealand

WorksEdit

  • Fitzsimmons, Robert (1901). Physical Culture and Self-Defense. Philadelphia, PA: Drexel Biddle.

See alsoEdit

Notes and referencesEdit

NotesEdit

  1. ^ Most modern sources list these tournaments as happening a year apart, in 1880 and 1881. However, contemporary reports in the Timaru Herald suggest that they took place a few months apart in 1882.[12]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "The Lineal Boxing World Champions". The Cyber Boxing Zone Encyclopedia.
  2. ^ a b "Robert Fitzsimmons". Encyclopædia Britannica. British boxer, the first fighter to hold the world boxing championship in three weight divisions.
  3. ^ McWhirter, Norris. The Guinness Book of World Records 1997. p.467. " Lightest heavyweight champion Robert James "Bob" Fitzsimmons of Great Britain, weighed 165 pounds when he won the title by knocking out James J. Corbett". Random House Publishing Group, 1997
  4. ^ Physical Freak Flattened Men "Like Texas Cyclone", The Barrier Miner, (Thursday, 25 November 1954), p.7.
  5. ^ a b c d McMillan, N.A.C. "Fitzsimmons, Robert". Dictionary of New Zealand Biography. Ministry for Culture and Heritage. Retrieved 15 January 2017.
  6. ^ Ingram 2012, p. 37.
  7. ^ a b c Baker, Anne Pimlott (2011) [2004]. "Fitzsimmons, Robert [Bob]". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/37418. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  8. ^ Brett, Henry (1924). "White Wings (volume I)". Auckland, New Zealand: The Brett Printing Company Limited. p. 152.
  9. ^ Nicholson 2011, p. 45.
  10. ^ Nicholson 2011, p. 46.
  11. ^ Romanos, Joseph (5 September 2013). "Boxing and wrestling – Professional boxing". Te Ara: The Encyclopedia of New Zealand. Ministry for Culture and Heritage. Retrieved 15 January 2017.
  12. ^ "[No title]". The Timaru Herald. 13 June 1882. p. 2 – via Papers Past.
  13. ^ Pollack, Adam (2006). John L. Sullivan: The Career of the First Gloved Heavyweight Champion. Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland & Company Inc. p. 65. ISBN 978-0-7864-2558-7.
  14. ^ Kieza 2015, p. 30.
  15. ^ "The Lineal Middlleweight Champions". The Cyber Boxing Zone Encyclopedia.
  16. ^ a b c "Box rec.com. boxer: Bob Fitzsimmons". Archived from the original on 3 October 2012. Retrieved 23 December 2009.
  17. ^ Toronto Star, 19 January 1895.
  18. ^ Reilly, Joe. "Born To Uphold The Law: Frank Sulloway's Principles Applied to the Earp-Clanton Feud of 1879–1882" (PDF). Drexel E-Repository and Archive. Archived from the original (PDF) on 12 July 2007. Retrieved 6 June 2011.
  19. ^ Barra, Alan (26 November 1995). "BACKTALK;When Referee Wyatt Earp Laid Down the Law". New York Times. Retrieved 23 April 2013.
  20. ^ Rasmussen, Cecilia (4 June 2000). "LA Then and Now: Mrs. Wyatt Earp Packed Her Own Punch". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 29 June 2011.
  21. ^ Shillingberg, William B. (Summer 1976). "Wyatt Earp and the Buntline Special Myth". Kansas Historical Quarterly. 42 (2): 113–154. Archived from the original on 1 February 2012.
  22. ^ Sonnichsen, C.L. (1968). Pass of the North: Four Centuries on the Rio Grande. Texas Western Press. pp. 358–362.
  23. ^ "The Lineal Heavyweight Champions". The Cyber Boxing Zone Encyclopedia. Archived from the original on 3 June 2009.
  24. ^ "Nellie Mighels Davis". Nevada Women's History Project. University of Nevada, Reno. Archived from the original on 21 September 2013. Retrieved 25 February 2012.
  25. ^ "The Lineal Light Heavyweight Champions". The Cyber Boxing Zone Encyclopedia.
  26. ^ Ken Burns, Unforgivable Blackness
  27. ^ Romanos, J. "Statue of Bob Fitzsimmons, Timaru", Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, 27 January 2015. Retrieved 10 December 2016.
  28. ^ http://www.fitzsimmons.co.nz/html/genealogy.html

BibliographyEdit

Further readingEdit

  • Kiwis With Gloves On by Brian F O'Brien, published 1960, Reed.

External linksEdit

Achievements
Preceded by
Nonpareil Jack Dempsey
World Middleweight Champion
14 January 1891 – 26 September 1894
Vacated
Succeeded by
Kid McCoy
Preceded by
James J. Corbett
World Heavyweight Champion
17 March 1897 – 9 June 1899
Succeeded by
James J. Jeffries
Preceded by
George Gardiner
World Light Heavyweight Champion
25 September 1903 – 20 December 1905
Succeeded by
Philadelphia Jack O'Brien
Titles in pretence
Preceded by
Peter Maher
World Heavyweight Champion
21 February 1896 – 2 December 1896
Succeeded by
Tom Sharkey