The Longest Fight: In the Ring with Joe Gans, Boxing's First African American Champion ePub (Adobe DRM) download by William Gildea

The Longest Fight: In the Ring with Joe Gans, Boxing's First African American Champion

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Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Publication date: June 2012
ISBN: 9781429942805
Digital Book format: ePub (Adobe DRM)

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The dramatic, little-known story of a fascinating early African-American sports hero Joe Gans was the welterweight champion of the world—smart, trim, handsome, with a revered right hook. He was the first black man in Baltimore to own a car, and the saloon he owned was the first place in the city where blacks and whites mingled socially. And yet Gans—as interesting a sports hero as America has produced—is largely unknown today. The Longest Fight will change that. The book centers on an epic boxing match held in September 1906 in Goldfield, Nevada: Gans versus the racist fighter Oscar “Battling” Nelson, who was known to bite opponents. The promoter, the young Tex Rickard, played up the fight as a race war. A new rail line brought tens of thousands of spectators from San Francisco. Dozens of reporters came to file blow-by-blow accounts to their home cities. And a pair of entrepreneurs filmed the fight to show in theaters, closed-circuit style. William Gildea uses Gans’s achievements to give us a deeply affecting account of what it was like to be an African-American sports champion in the early twentieth century. And through it all Gans was a man of wit, style, and courage—an unforgettable precursor to Satchel Paige, Jim Thorpe, Jesse Owens, and Jackie Robinson.
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