Boxing Memorabilia – Gone But Not Forgotten
“GONE BUT NOT FORGOTTEN” is a section I’ve created so boxing collectors (and myself) can have a look at some of the items that have passed through my collection and are NO LONGER AVAILABLE. They are in the hands of other collectors who continue to preserve boxing history through our great hobby.
This is a superb original portrait shot of Johnny Kilbane the great featherweight champion.
Kid Chocolate vs Fidel La Barba
At left, Kid Chocolate and Fidel La Barba, the retired undefeated flyweight champion, as they appeared before their 1929 bout. Both men were reported to be in top physical shape.
Eugene Criqui, a French war hero, whose shattered jaw was made over by plastic surgery, ended Johnny Kilbane’s 11 year reign in 1923 in six rounds. Criqui had scored 28 kayo’s in 55 bouts after returning from the war in 1917. He won the title on June 2 and lost it to Johnny Dundee on July 26, wearing the crown only 54 days.
Young Jack Thompson
Defeated Jackie Fields in 1930 via decision for the World Welterweight Championship. Thompson lost it to Tommy Freeman on September 5, 1930 then won it back from Freeman on April 14, when Tommy couldn’t come out for the 13th round. On October 23, 1931, Lou Brouillard out pointed Young Jack Thompson for the title. Measures 8″ x 10″.
Ken Norton Watercolor
Beautiful original watercolor professionally mounted on wood by the legendary ESPN official SPORTS CENTURY artist and RING MAGAZINE cover artist Gabe Perillo.
This 1978 original watercolor of KEN NORTON was to grace the cover of RING MAGAZINE if KEN NORTON the winner of his historic fight with LARRY HOLMES.
His fights with Joe Louis were symbolic of a much greater struggle, but Schmeling, the man was simply an excellent boxer who proved himself worthy of the World Heavyweight championship. A strong puncher with both hands, and the master of the destructive short right hook, Max won the crown on a low blow from the fist of Jack Sharkey in 1930 and lost it back to Sharkey in 1932. After KO’ing Joe Louis in 1936, Schmeling signed to fight the current champion James J. Braddock, but the boxing politicians blocked this, fearing the loss of the title to Europe.
A grand 8 by 10 inches, vintage original Bryant Studio photo, brilliantly inscribed in German and boldly signed and dated (June 22, 1931), while champion, in black fountain pen. Without a doubt, one of the finest Max Schmeling autographed photos extant.
This Irish “Baby Face” was a hard hitter who could target a punch with devastating accuracy. His bouts with Barney Ross are legendary. McLarnin first won the World Welterweight Championship in 1933 when he KO’d Young Corbett III in the first round. He lost the title to Ross in 1934 with a split decision, before 65,000 fans. Four months later, McLarnin regained the title in a decision victory. Finally, in 1935, with Jack Dempsey as referee, McLarnin lost a furious decision to Ross. Before retiring in 1936, he split two with Tony Canzoneri and also defeated Lou Ambers.
A gorgeous 8 by 10 inches, vintage original Marlow Studio photo, inscribed and boldly signed in black fountain pen. One of the nicest Jimmy McLarnin signed photos I have seen.
Carlos Monzon is considered by many to be one of the all-time greatest champions in the history of the middleweight division. He held the title for a lengthy 7 years and was undefeated for 13 years with a remarkable streak of 82 fights from 1964 until his retirement in 1977. He defended his crown 14 times.
Alas, he was not as comfortable outside of the ring, being convicted of murdering his girlfriend in 1988 and tragically being killed in a car crash, while on furlough for good behavior, in 1995.
An 8 by 10 black & white glossy, boxing pose photograph boldly signed in blue sharpie.
Here is an ultra-rare 8 x 10 photograph autographed by the great Dick Tiger. This is the only 8 x 10 autographed Tiger I have seen in 30 years of collecting! When you find a Tiger autograph, it is usually on the 3 x 5 postcard photo, or as a cut autograph. This stunning fight posed, 8 x 10 is boldly inscribed in blue ballpoint pen “To Billy, Best Wishes From Dick Tiger”.
Dick Tiger Letter
A magnificent, handwritten one page letter on Tiger-Giardello championship fight letterhead. Tiger, always the proper gentleman, grants an autograph request to a fan. This piece is an autograph collectors dream!
This beautiful signed, handwritten letter on picture stationary says it all. Dick Tiger is an extremely rare signature in any form. This is the only Dick Tiger handwritten letter I know of. Would make an awesome display piece.
A heavyweight champion who possessed great physical strength to go with one of the most powerful right hands in history. It is sometimes said of Max Baer that he traded the Heavyweight Championship of the World for the high life and glitter of Broadway. In 1933, he fought the best fight of his career in hammering Max Schmeling and in 1934 KO’d Primo Carnera for the crown. But in 1935, he frittered the title away to James J. Braddock in 15 half-hearted rounds.
William Lawrence Stribling Jr., had 285 fights behind him when he was killed in a motorcycle accident in 1933 at the age of 28. He KO’d 125 opponents, a record topped only by the great ARCHIE MOORE. The “King of the Canebrakes” never won a championship, but his career was still going strong when it was cut short. An extremely rare and desirable autograph.
An original 8 X 10 sepia tone Volpe Studio photograph inscribed and signed by Young Stribling in magnificent condition.
Inscribed and boldly signed in black fountain pen ink: “To My Friend Mr Fillioux, With All Good Wishes For The Wonderful Treatment Shown Me While in Paris, W.L. Stribling Jr. 11-5-29” Signed while in training for the Primo Carnera fight on December 7, 1929 in Paris, France.
Harlem Tommy Murphy
“Harlem” Tommy Murphy, while never a champion, fought the best of his day. Ranked among the top lightweights of the early 1900s, his ferocious battles with Abe Attell, Ad Wolgast, and Willie Ritchie are well documented in boxing lore. In 1912 and 1913, in twenty-round contests in San Francisco, he defeated both Abe Attell and Ad Wolgast by decision. He lost a 20 round decision for the World’s Lightweight Championship to Willie Ritchie in 1914, also in San Francisco.
A gorgeous sepia-toned photograph, boldly inscribed to Nat Fleischer and signed by Harlem Tommy Murphy in black fountain pen. Measures 10 inches by 7 inches.
One of the dirtiest fighters in the business, Fritzie Zivic was also one of the most popular. With 233 lifetime-recorded bouts, he was also among the busiest. A popular Madison Square Garden fighter, Zivic won the World’s Welterweight Title from and successfully defended it against Henry Armstrong in 1940/41.
A gorgeous sepia-toned fight posed original photograph, neatly inscribed to Nat Fleischer and boldly signed in beautiful blue fountain pen by Fritzie Zivic as Welterweight Champion of the World. Measures 9 ¼ inches by 6 ¼ inches.
One of the cleverest boxers in modern ring history, Thomas Patrick Loughran successfully defended the Lightheavyweight championship against Jimmy Slattery, Leo Lomski, Pete Latzo, Mickey Walker, and James J. Braddock before giving it up to campaign as a heavyweight. He was Ring Magazines fighter of the year in 1929 and 1931.
A brilliant sepia-toned original photograph of Loughran receiving his Ring Belt. Beautifully inscribed and signed boldly in deep blue fountain pen by Tommy Loughran. Measures 9 ¼ inches by 6 ½ inches.
Born In San Francisco, February 13, 1891, Willie Ritchie was a superlative boxer in all phases of the business. Spending the first 5 years of his career in California, Ritchie won the World Lightweight Championship from Ad Wolgast in Nov. 1912 in Daly City (Wolgast was DQ’d in the 16th RD for low blows). In 1913, Willie beat off a fierce challenge by Mexican Joe Rivers by KO’ing him in the 11th. Ritchie later decisioned Harlem Tommy Murphy in 20. He ventured to London where he was narrowly outpointed by Freddie Welsh. Willie Ritchie retired from the ring in 1917 and trained U.S. soldiers as a boxing instructor. He was later appointed boxing inspector for the California State Athletic Commission.
A vintage sepia-toned fight posed original photograph, neatly inscribed to Nat Fleischer and boldly signed in beautiful dark blue fountain pen by Willie Ritchie. Measures 9 inches by 7 inches.
The first black heavyweight champion of the world needs no introduction. On offer is an extremely rare autographed poster of the legendary Jack Johnson. The poster itself is cardboard, measures 22 inches by 14 inches, and heralds his appearance (autograph signing) at the World’s Fair Museum. Visually stunning, it is red and black against a white background and features a brilliant photo of a fight posed Jack Johnson.
One can only speculate of the enterprising youngster, having no photo or autograph book, deciding to remove the poster from an outside wall and bring it inside for his hero to sign. Very likely, the only Jack Johnson autographed poster in existence. It is boldly signed and dated by Johnson in black fountain pen; “Jack Johnson Dec 19-41”. If you’re looking for a unique Johnson signed piece then this is it.
Measures a large 6 inches x 3.5 inches. In excellent condition, no tears or creases. Boldly hand signed by SONNY LISTON in blue ballpoint pen ink. Authenticity is unconditionally guaranteed for life. Would make a magnificent display piece when properly framed with an additional Liston photograph.
Mushy Callahan became only the second recognized Junior Welterweight Champion in 1926.
A rare signature in any form, this is an extraordinary, original vintage 8 x 10, boldly inscribed and signed by Mushy Callahan, in fountain pen, to 1920’s lightweight contender, New York’s Joe Glick. Mushy writes; “For my pal Joe Glick, One of the greatest fighters the world has ever known, I’m not kidding! Sincerely Mushy Callahan” The nicest Mushy signed photos, I’ve owned.
SANDRO REMOVES ANY DOUBT THAT HE IS THE TRUE Jr. Middleweight Champion of the World
This man’s fight with the legendary DICK TIGER drew a sub-par 11,547 fans to Madison Square Garden on May 24, 1968. However, those who saw it still talk about it! Tiger hurt Foster in the first round. The second round again went Tiger’s way. But in round two BOB FOSTER took command and roared back with beautiful combination punching. AND…in round four, Tiger’s light heavyweight championship reign came to an end as Foster nailed Tiger with a right uppercut followed by a tremendous left hook for the knockout, the first of Tiger’s career.
Unbeatable at 175 lbs, Foster had little trouble defending his title over the next six years. Devastating in the ring and at first somewhat intimidating in person, BOB FOSTER, undoubtedly one of the greatest light heavyweight champions in history always has time for a fan’s autograph request.
Born in Puerto Rico in 1936 and raised in New York City, CARLOS ORTIZ turned pro at the age of eighteen and battled his way to the world junior welterweight title in 1959 and the world lightweight title in 1962. In a nationally televised bout, against champion JOE “OLD BONES” BROWN in Las Vegas, Ortiz avoided a slugfest with the seasoned Brown and peppered him with left jabs and won a lopsided decision. Always a willing and gracious signer.
When obtaining autographs in person always try to find something a little different and unusual relating to the fighter’s career! It adds to your enjoyment to have a “different” signed piece and serves as a great memento.
Tommy Burns (real name Noah Brusso) was the smallest (5 ft. 7 in.) and sometimes most belittled of the heavyweight champions. Canadian born in 1881, he began boxing in 1900. When Jim Jefferies retired, Jack Root was paired against Marvin Hart to fight for the vacant title. Hart won, but lost to Burns over 20 rounds on Feb. 23, 1906. Tommy made four defenses in America, then went abroad and bested the British champion and several others. He fought in France, then went to Australia, where he made two successful defenses of his crown. However, on that fateful Boxing Day 1908, in Sidney, Jack Johnson toyed with “Mr. Tommy” (the three-to-one favorite). Tough Tommy Burns hung on until the 14th round when the cops stepped in to stop the bout.
On offer is an original photograph boldly signed and inscribed by Tommy Burns in dark blue fountain pen “To Johnny Obbecke, One of the Best, Every Good Wish, Tommy Burns”. It measures 6 inches x 4 inches and would display beautifully in a vintage frame
This autographed photo comes from the recent Johnny Obeck estate sale. John Obeck fought around the 1900s under the names “Johnny Obeck” and “Johnny Leonard” and Johnny Obbecke”.
Joe Frazier vs. Jerry Quarry
Madison Square Garden – June 23, 1969
The most anticipated match-up of the year did not disappoint. The first three rounds were sensational with enough toe-to-toe exchanges for an entire 15 round fight. Toward the end of the 3rd round, Frazier landed a hook that opened an inch long slice under Quarry’s right eye. From the 4th to 7th, Frazier methodically backed the bloodied Quarry to the ropes. Before the start of the 8th, the ringside physician ruled Quarry could not see out of the hideously cut eye. The fight was immediately halted and Frazier declared the winner.
Being offered is the rare original one-sheet size on-site poster for this 15 round Heavyweight Championship bout held at Madison Square Garden on June 23, 1969. It has been professionally linen backed and is in beautiful condition with deep red and bright yellow and black colors.. A rare MSG one-sheet. (Measures 41 inches x 28 inches, bold colors). It has already been professionally framed for display.
Emile Griffith vs. Dick Tiger
Madison Square Garden – 1970
Being offered is the original on-site poster for this much-anticipated match-up of New York fan favorites. It is in excellent condition. A nice MSG cardboard poster. (Measures 22 inches x 14 inches, bold colors). Ready to frame and display.
Dick Tiger vs. Jose Torres
World’s Light Heavyweight Championship
Madison Square Garden – May 16, 1967
This battle of champions, now Hall Of Famers, who were both fan favorites in New York City, was the eagerly anticipated championship rematch between the two. In their previous meeting, Dick Tiger had defeated Jose Torres to win the World’s Light Heavyweight Crown. In this bout, the more aggressive Tiger would again emerge victorious with a 15 round decision win over the Puerto Rican fan favorite.
Being offered is the rare original one-sheet size on-site poster for this World’s Light Heavyweight Championship held at Madison Square Garden on May 16, 1967. It has been professionally linen backed and is in excellent condition. A rare MSG one-sheet. (Measures 41 inches x 28 inches, bold colors) Ready to frame and display.
“Irish” Jerry Quarry vs. Amos “Scrap Iron” Johnson
Original on-site poster from the Olympic Auditorium. Excellent condition, cardboard, measures 22 inches x 14 inches.
A beautiful display piece!
Frankie De Paula vs. Dick Tiger
October 25, 1968, MSG New York, Tiger Decisions DePaula in 10 Rounds. This was the Fight of the Year for 1968 as voted by Ring Magazine!
Lew Jenkins vs. Henry Armstrong
This historic bout pitted Lew Jenkins (the Lightweight Champion of the World) vs Henry Armstrong (the Welterweight Champion of the World). Billed as “The Greatest Bout Of All Time” it took place at The Polo Grounds in New York City on July 17, 1940. Armstrong would win the tough fought battle via TKO over Jenkins in the 6th round.
Welterweight champion Henry Armstrong was obliged to weigh in seven pounds under the division limit for his scheduled 12-rounder with lightweight champion Lew Jenkins. This was no problem for Armstrong, a featherweight champion who was small for a welterweight. Armstrong came in at 139 pounds, while Jenkins was just a half-pound over the lightweight limit of 135.
The fight held intrigue because Jenkins, from Sweetwater, Texas, was known to be a terrific hitter. New York Times columnist John Kieran was one of many who felt that Jenkins’s big punch gave him a chance. “If he can land that punch on a dodging target like Armstrong he may do well for himself,” Kieran opined in a prefight story.
Jenkins did indeed do damage. Joseph P. Dawson reported in The New York Times that Armstrong’s left eye was swollen almost shut while his right eye “dripped a blinding flow of blood” after a desperation left hook opened an old cut. Armstrong was winning the fight, though. He took command from the fourth round and Jenkins was down seven times, unable to hold the stronger, superior fighter in Armstrong. Referee Arthur Donovan stopped the fight at the end of the sixth as Jenkins “writhed and groaned on his stool” in the words of reporter Dawson.
This is the original on-site poster from this famous bout. The poster is very thick cardboard almost 1/4 inch thick (.6 cm) and measures 20″ wide x 30″ long. This unusual heavy cardboard poster may have been used to advertise the fight at the Polo Grounds. Similar to a “standee” poster, it may have been placed in a display holder at the venue. It is in excellent condition. It has some surface foxing and chipping at the bottom edge where it would have been placed in a holder and some minor edge chipping which would matt out when framing. It features fight posed photographs of each fighter and also action photographs from title bouts for each fighter. I have never seen another poster like this one or any other poster from this fight for that matter. This could be the only surviving on-site poster for this fight.
Barney Ross vs. Battling Battalino
Barney Ross was born in New York in 1909 but grew up in Chicago, raised by orthodox Jewish parents who wanted him to become a Hebrew teacher. A fast, clever, hard hitting boxer, he held World Titles in the Lightweight, Jr. Welterweight, and Welterweight classes. On October 22, 1932, he fought the former World’s Featherweight Champion in Christopher “Bat” Battalino. This grueling contest of once and future champs, ended in a 10 round decision win for Barney Ross “the Pride of the Ghetto”. Six months later, at this very same venue, Barney Ross would defeat the great Tony Canzoneri for both the World Lightweight and Jr. Welterweight Championships. Offered here is the exceedingly rare, original, on-site, one sheet poster for this fight held in the City of Big Shoulders. It is in outstanding condition, has been professionally linen-backed, and is ready for framing. It exhibits superb, red, white, and blue colors and features beautiful head-to-toe photos of each fighter. Barney Ross posters are extremely rare and seldom offered. An extremely rare original on-site poster from Chicago Stadium in the “Windy City”.
Jake LaMotta vs. O’Neil Bell
October 25, 1946, Detroit Michigan, arriving in the ring in his trademark leopard-skin hooded robe, Jake LaMotta quickly dispatches top contender O’Neil Bell Round via KO in round 2. Jake LaMotta posters are extremely rare.
Paper poster, measures 22 inches x 28 inches. This is an original onsite poster, professionally dry mounted, matted, and beautifully framed. A must for fans of “The Raging Bull”, Jake LaMotta. The oldest living boxing world champion!!
Irish Jerry Quarry vs. George Chuvalo MSG Original Half Sheet
Joe Frazier vs. Jimmy Ellis
On February 16, 1970, Joe Frazier, the recognized NY World Champion was matched against Jimmy Ellis, the WBA World Champion at New York’s Madison Square Garden. Philadelphia’s own “Smokin” Joe Frazier went on to unify the heavyweight championship with a devastating 5th round KO of WBA champ Jimmy Ellis. This is the original, on-site, one-sheet poster for this historic title unification battle. It is in beautiful condition, professionally linen-backed, and ready for framing. This remarkable original MSG poster sports outstanding head-to-toe shots of each champion against the legendary yellow, red & black colors. Historic piece!
Henry Armstrong vs. Fritzie Zivic
On October 4, 1940, the legendary Henry Armstrong lost the World Welterweight Championship, the last of his titles, to Fritzie Zivic. In a close bout, Zivic upset the heavily favored Armstrong. Zivic withstood Armstrong’s body attack and targeted his opponent’s eyes, nearly closing them in the final rounds. In the final round, Zivic knocked down Armstrong, seconds before the bell. Note: On the undercard, a young man named Sugar Ray Robinson made his pro debut with a quick 2 round TKO over Joe Echevarria. Presented here is the extremely rare original, three-sheet size on-site poster from this historic MSG boxing event. It is in superb condition and has been professionally linen-backed. Very few of these MSG three sheet on-site posters were produced for boxing events, let alone survived over the years. If you want a rare poster in your collection, then this is it!
Eder Jofre vs. Herman Marquez
On May 4, 1962, 3-time world champion Eder Jofre knocked out number one ranked Herman Marquez to retain his World Bantamweight Championship at the famed Cow Palace in San Francisco. This is the original on-site poster for this bout. It is in beautiful condition and has been professionally linen-backed and is ready for framing. On-site posters of multi-champion and Hall of Famer, Eder Jofre are extremely rare. One of the few vegetarians to hold a world title, the great Jofre only fought in the U.S. three times. Very cool vintage original poster!
ORIGINAL 1957 CALIFORNIA BOXING LICENSE APPLICATION (SIGNED) plus 1956 PHYSICIANS REPORT (SIGNED) (not pictured) plus 1957 RAP SHEET (3 PAGES) plus 1969 FINGERPRINT CARD (SIGNED).
Great find for fans of “The Ole Mongoose”. Original documents.
ORIGINAL 1967 CALIFORNIA BOXING LICENSE APPLICATION (SIGNED). THIS WAS FOR HIS FIRST PRO BOXING LICENSE AFTER GETTING OUT OF MILITARY SERVICE.
MARVELOUS MARVIN HAGLER
1984 SIGNED TOP RANK AGREEMENT
Nice typed two page letter. Signed boldly on second page as Marvelous Marvin Hagler in black ink. Beautiful signature! Also, signed by Bob Arum in blue ink. Refers to a Hagler appearance after the Mustafa Hamsho bout where Hagler retained his undisputed middleweight crown via 3rd round KO. Cool piece for Hagler collectors.
“Irish” Jerry Quarry vs. Muhammad Ali a.k.a Cassius Clay
Jerry Quarry’s original signed fight contract for the historic comeback bout with Ali.
This is the Quarry original signed fight contract for the infamous Ali vs. Quarry bout held on October 26, 1970, in Atlanta, GA. It is beautifully signed on the last page in blue ballpoint ink by Jerry Quarry, his manager/father Jack Quarry, and Robert Kossel (for the promoter).
The contract is dated September 9, 1970, between Jerry Quarry and Sports Action Inc (House of Sports Inc.). It consists of nine legal size pages and details the promoter, fight location, ancillary fight rights, Quarry’s financial remuneration details, public relations details, charitable contributions to be made by Quarry & Clay, post-fight payment details, and future bout prospects and details should Quarry win.
Also attached is the original Western Union telegram sent by Jack Quarry confirming Jerry Quarry’s acceptance to fight Muhammad Ali in Atlanta on October 26.
Antonio INOKI vs. Muhammad ALI
Original Full On-Site TICKET – June 26, 1976
Ali as boxing heavyweight Champion fought the great Japanese wrestling champion Antonio Inoki in a 15 round exhibition match in Tokyo. On offer is a scarce full ticket to this historic event. In near mint/mint condition. It is accompanied with a signed letter of authenticity from the highly respected founder of JO Sports Inc., Craig Hamilton. This beautiful oversized ticket measures 9″ x 4″ and features color images of both combatants.
HANDWRITTEN and SIGNED 3 PAGE SIGNED LETTER 1957 WITH ENVELOPE
GREAT BOXING CONTENT – TALKS ABOUT GENE TUNNEY AND HARRY GREB!
BARNEY ROSS vs. HENRY ARMSTRONG
FULL TICKET – MAY 26, 1938
NEAR MINT/Sharp Corners/Clean/Strong
This is the official ticket issued for the fight.
SIGNED 1972 STATE OF CALIFORNIA APPLICATION FOR LICENSE AS A WRESTLING REFEREE. LICENSE IS ATTACHED!
KID CHOCOLATE Signed Promotional Photograph
Original promotional photograph, signed, dated, and inscribed by Kid Chocolate. Boldly signed by Kid Chocolate in peacock blue fountain pen ink. Dated June 18, 1932! Vintage signature of the first Cuban World Champion. Fight posed head-to-toe photo is in beautiful condition, very clean, no creases, sharp corners, measures 8 inches x 5 inches, signature rates a 10.
FIGHTING DICK HYLAND
“California’s Greatest Lightweight”
In 1909, Fighting Frank Fullgraff, of the Brett Lithographing Co., requested permission from Dick Hyland to reproduce his image on boxing cards of the day. In turn, Fighting Dick Hyland signed this contract, confirming his agreement.
FIGHTING DICK CARD
In 1911 the Surbrug Cigarette Co. Prize Fight Series No. 101 tobacco card set was produced. Later categorized as the T225 set, the “Fighting Dick” Hyland card not only reproduced his image but also reproduced his exact signature as it appeared on this contract. Historic piece!
OSCAR De La HOYA 1993 FIGHT WORN HANDWRAPS
On Tuesday, April 6, 1993, at the Rochester War Memorial, undefeated OSCAR De La HOYA fought tough Mike “KID IRISH” Grable in an important lightweight bout. De La HOYA knocked Grable down twice as Grable took a standing eight count in the 8th round. De La HOYA went on to win an easy 8 round decision in this, his 6th professional bout.
Displayed are the fight-worn hand wraps from each fighter, which were signed by both fighters in the dressing room, immediately following the fight. Also, included is the original onsite FIGHT POSTER for the fight.
OSCAR De La HOYA has signed both his wraps and has added the rare notation “GOLD ’92” on each wrap. This, of course, is in reference to his Gold medal win in the 1992 Olympics. Only his very early autographs were signed with this Olympic reference.
Mike “Kid Irish” Grable has signed both of his wraps and has also added the date and his fight record noting his loss to OSCAR.