Key dates of Golden Gloves boxing in Chicago as the event celebrates its 100th anniversary:
1923: 424 men from Chicago’s working class neighborhoods fought for respect and glory in “a great boxing carnival,” according to the Chicago Golden Gloves website, with Arch Ward, Chicago Tribune sports editor, as its tournament managing director. The Tribune sponsored the tournaments as a way to sell newspapers. Word of the event spread
1928: The term “Golden Gloves” is first used, for an inter-city boxing event between Chicago and New York fighters that lasted until 1961. The two cities become the two main hubs as Golden Gloves competitions spread to different states.
1931: About 40,000 people witness the amateur boxing at Soldier Field.
1934: Future heavyweight champion Joe Louis wins Chicago title.
1948: WGN-TV’s first live broadcast had Jack Brickhouse call the finals at a sold-out Chicago Stadium.
1953: Future heavyweight champion Charles “Sonny” Liston wins Chicago title.
1959: Future heavyweight champion Cassius Clay, who later became Muhammad Ali, wins the first of two consecutive intercity titles. The Associated Press reported that the 17-year-old from Louisville, Kentucky “proved he was quite advanced for his age as a sharp counter puncher in taking a three-round decision over New York’s light heavyweight Tony Madigan.”
1962: Golden Gloves becomes a national tournament. The Golden Gloves of America soon follows.
1963: Emanuel “Manny” Steward, a future trainer and boxing commentator, wins Chicago title.
1994: The Chicago event hosts its first women’s division.
2023: The Chicago Golden Gloves celebrates its 100th anniversary in what it says is the largest and longest-running, non-national boxing tournament in the United States. Finals held at Cicero Stadium.
Sources: Chicago Golden Gloves website, Chicago Tribune and The Associated Press Corporate Archives.
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