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John L. Sullivan Biography

The First Boxing Celebrity, End Of An Era, Chronology, Last Of The Bare-knuckle Champions

1858-1918

American boxer

John L. Sullivan was the last of the "bare-knuckle" boxing champions. Heavyweight champion of the world from 1882 to 1892, he lost his title to Jim Corbett in the first heavyweight boxing championship to be fought with gloves. Considered by many to be the first American sports star, Sullivan was undefeated in his twenty-seven-year career until his bout with Corbett. He was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 1990.

Sketch by Michael Belfiore

Additional topics

Famous Sports StarsBoxing