James J. Corbett

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James John Corbett, born September 1, 1866 in San Francisco, California, United States died February 18, 1933 in Bayside, New York, was a heavyweight boxing champion.

Stamp

Dubbed by the media as "Gentleman Jim Corbett," he was college educated and in addition to boxing, pursued a career in acting, performing at a variety of theaters. He has been called the "Father of Modern Boxing" because of his scientific approach and innovations in technique that changed prizefighting from a brawl to an art form.

On September 7, 1892 at the Olympic Club in New Orleans, Louisiana, Corbett won the World Heavyweight Boxing Championship by knocking out John L. Sullivan in the 21st round. His victory made him the first heavyweight boxer to win a championship under the Marquess of Queensberry rules which, amongst other things, established that a fight consist of three-minute rounds and required the fighters to wear leather boxing gloves.

Jim Corbett lost his championship to Bob Fitzsimmons on March 17, 1897 in Carson City, Nevada.

Following his retirement from boxing, Corbett returned to acting, appearing on stage and in film. He authored his autobiography under the title The Roar of the Crowd that was serialized by the Saturday Evening Post in six weekly instalments during October/November of 1924. The following year, G.P. Putnam's Sons, published it in book form, marketing it as the "True Tale of the Rise and Fall of a Champion." In 1942, the story was made into a Hollywood motion picture titled, Gentleman Jim, starring Errol Flynn as Corbett.

On his passing in 1933, Corbett was interred in the Cypress Hills Cemetery in Brooklyn, New York. On its creation, he was elected posthumously to the International Boxing Hall of Fame.


Preceded by:
John L. Sullivan
Heavyweight boxing champion
1892–1897
Succeeded by:
Bob Fitzsimmons

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