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Englishwoman Barbara Buttrick: The first womens World Boxing Champion


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#1 Guthlac

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Posted 01 December 2012 - 03:26 AM

Female Champ Barbara Buttrick





http://www.nfa.dept....s/buttrick.html

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Ref: NFA 0083
Title: The Barbara Buttrick Collection
Scope: The collection contains photographs, handbills and programmes relating to Barbara Buttrick's boxing career.
Dates: 1947-1968
Level: Fonds
Extent: 1 archive box
Name of creator: Barbara Buttrick
Administrative / biographical history: Barbara Buttrick 'The Mighty Atom of the Ring' was born in Cottingham, Yorkshire, in 1930.

Barbara started on the fairground booths and boxed with Professor Bosco and Sam McKeowen. Buttrick boxed as a 98-pound flyweight and was only four foot eleven inches in height. She was inspired to fight after hearing about the exploits of Polly Fairclough in the Sunday Despatch in the 1940s.

In 1954, Barbara wrote to the World's Fair detailing her career on the booths: 'It was reading about Polly Fairclough some years ago that first inspired me to take up boxing as my profession. I made my first appearance on the fairground at Epsom on derby day, in 1949, in Tommy Wood's booth, and later that year I travelled in the West country with Sam McKeowen's show, issuing a challenge to any girl n the crowd and giving three-round exhibitions. During the past few years I have given about 1,000 boxing exhibitions on the fairgrounds of England, France and America and none of my challengers have yet stayed the distance to collect their prize money.'

In 1950 Barbara was touring for a season with Professor Boscoe Boxing and Wresting Show in Yorkshire. During their time at Dewsbury the local Mayor objected to a planned fight between Barbara and a woman fighter from Germany. The publicity attracted great public interest and the show was sold out. However, the challenger failed to show up but Barbara writes that the publicity resulted in challenges being issued from the crowd.

After travelling with the booths she went on to America in 1953 and joined an athletic Show which travelled the Midways with a carnival, playing in Kansas, Indiana and Missouri. In 1954, Buttrick started fighting competitive bouts rather than exhibition matches becoming one of the most famous women boxers of all time and the first female boxer to have her fight broadcast on national television.

Pioneering Pugilists: Barbara Buttrick

http://www.nbcolympi...a-buttrick.html

http://www.womenboxi...es/barbara1.htm
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#2 Karl

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Posted 01 December 2012 - 10:50 AM

Good read that.
I've been looking into the Victorian bare-knuckle boxing history after cathcing a programme about it on the Yesterday channel.
It puts David Haye and Fraudley Harrison into perspective! (although there are good English fighters like Price and Froch)

In 1860 the 5ft 8inch Tom Sayers (English champion) met the giant American challenger Heenam at Farnborough, Hampshire.
It was declared a draw after a mammoth and gory fight. Sayers fought most of it one handed after breaking a hand early on.

''You ranting lads and sporting blades, come listen to my song.
I'm sure that it will please you well and it won't detain you long.
't was the seventeenth of April and thousands went with joy
To see the English champion and the bold Benicia Boy.
It was in the town of Farnborough all in the blooming spring,
When the burly English champion he stripped off in the ring.
He stripped to fight young Heenan, the gallant son of Troy,
And to try his English muscle on the bold Benicia Boy.
It was early in the morning before the cock did crow,
Like tigers into battle these gallant lads did go.
The blood if flew in torrents and never a blow they missed,
And they carried a bunch of thunderbolts well fastened in each fist.''
http://www.informati...nandsayers.html

One thing that annoys me when looking into boxing of that era is how the English fighters are often called ''gypsies''. It was the gypsies that carried on the tradition of bare-knuckle after the Queensbury rules were introduced, so lazy researchers assume all bare-knuckle fighters from England were gypsies.
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When Offa spilled Myrging blood we were proud
When Hengest routed the wealas we were proud
When Penda withstood the cross we were proud
When Alfred stayed the Danes we were proud

Heroes passed unto ye we give hail
Mighty men without fear, without shame
Some will say that our pride is a sin
But in their name we'll unite and we're proud to be proud

When victory was won at Brunanburh we were proud
When Byrhtnoth raised his sword we were proud
When Harold destroyed Hardrada we were proud
When Hereward defied the bastard we were proud

Slowly with time the past slips away
But deep in our souls their memory stays
Weapons of guilt won't conquer our minds
Just strengthen our will to defy

The ignorant void ever opening wide
But we keep their names and spirits alive
Arrows of fear won't pierce our minds
Just strengthen our will to defy

Forefather - Pround to be Proud

#3 Guthlac

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Posted 01 December 2012 - 01:46 PM

Good read that.
I've been looking into the Victorian bare-knuckle boxing history after cathcing a programme about it on the Yesterday channel.
It puts David Haye and Fraudley Harrison into perspective! (although there are good English fighters like Price and Froch)

In 1860 the 5ft 8inch Tom Sayers (English champion) met the giant American challenger Heenam at Farnborough, Hampshire.
It was declared a draw after a mammoth and gory fight. Sayers fought most of it one handed after breaking a hand early on.

''You ranting lads and sporting blades, come listen to my song.
I'm sure that it will please you well and it won't detain you long.
't was the seventeenth of April and thousands went with joy
To see the English champion and the bold Benicia Boy.
It was in the town of Farnborough all in the blooming spring,
When the burly English champion he stripped off in the ring.
He stripped to fight young Heenan, the gallant son of Troy,
And to try his English muscle on the bold Benicia Boy.
It was early in the morning before the cock did crow,
Like tigers into battle these gallant lads did go.
The blood if flew in torrents and never a blow they missed,
And they carried a bunch of thunderbolts well fastened in each fist.''
http://www.informati...nandsayers.html

One thing that annoys me when looking into boxing of that era is how the English fighters are often called ''gypsies''. It was the gypsies that carried on the tradition of bare-knuckle after the Queensbury rules were introduced, so lazy researchers assume all bare-knuckle fighters from England were gypsies.


Good link Karl

I enjoyed that series, though they certainly stretched in it some areas to promote non-English.

Lots of my older relatives were boxers and my great grandfather was a bare knuckle fighter.
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#4 Antony

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Posted 02 December 2012 - 08:46 AM

I applaud Miss Butt-kick.

'My boyfriend doesn't mind...?'

He probably didn't dare.
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What's in a name? Names express ideas, and he who uses wrong names is not likely to have right ideas. Britain [is] a geographical name. England is the land of the English. It is important [we] never apply the names England or English to the land or people of Britain in the days before the land became England by the English people settling in it. If we do we take people for our forefathers who are not our forefathers. [E. A. Freeman, 1879].