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Author Topic: pugilistic battles  (Read 4646 times)

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Re: pugilistic battles
« Reply #5 on: August 23, 2018, 22:24:40 »
Shameful Occurrence at Sheerness.
On Sunday, a shameful occurrence took place at the Half-way House between Minster and Sheerness. A wellknown character, belonging to Sheerness, and a contract rigger, fought a pitched battle for five guineas a side: they displayed their abilities while the people were going to church, and had 75 rounds, which lasted two hours - the former came off victorious.
   From The Carmarthen Journal and South Wales Weekly Advertiser. 23rd March 1811.

Prize Fighting in Kent.

A correspondent writes: Another prize fight took place early on Monday morning at a little frequented spot close to Chalk, and about a couple of miles from Gravesend. The principals and their seconds followed the example set them at the recent prize fight at Orpington, and went under assumed names. One called himself "Dodger," and was seconded by a man who answered to the name of "Slippery;" while the other pugilist and his attendant were addressed respectively as "Cheatham" and "Hookam." The men entering the ring at about five o'clock, in the presence of about 30 persons - backers and friends - and, a referee having been chosen and corners tossed for, they quickly got to work.

"Cheatham" was by far the larger and more powerful man, but it soon became evident that "Dodger" had the most science, for the latter walked around his man, and hit him when and where he pleased, until at the conclusion of the twelfth, "Cheatham" presented a pitiable appearance. He, however, did not give in until after fighting thirty-one rounds in one hour and a few minutes, when his strength completely deserted him, and he was unable to respond to the call of time.

He was so severely punished that his second "Hookam," and another man were compelled to carry him to a closed carriage that was waiting, and which, as soon as "Cheatham" and one or two others had got on board, drove off at a rapid pace in the direction of Gravesend. "Dodger" was comparatively unhurt, and he and some friends - one of whom appeared to be exceedingly jubilant over the fact of having won what he termed a "pony" - walked off in an opposite direction to that taken by the vehicle containing "Cheatham." There is only one police-constable stationed at Chalk, and this, perhaps, accounts for the impunity with which the fight under notice was carried out. It is understood that the principals were two well-known London pugilists, and the stakes were 25 a side.

      From The Cardiff Times. 29th September 1883.

Prize Fight in Kent.

A determined fight between two local pugilists took place in Canterbury yesterday. The contending parties were a barber named Bennet and a bricklayer named Brett. After fighting three-quarters of an hour, and damaging each other considerably the men agreed to a draw. The police knew nothing of the fight.
     From the South Wales Daily News. 31st December 1887.

Below added 4/6/2019

Fatal Pugilistic Encounter in Kent. March 1872.

A brutal contest between two ruffians in Kent has resulted in the death of one and the appearance of the other and three accessories in the Dartford police court, on Saturday. The Observer publishes the following account of the matter : -

The police on the Thames division had got wind of a projected pugilister encounter between two men - John Connor, aged 29, Queen's Terrace, Fulham Fields, London, cowman, and Thomas Callis. Inspector Varley went down to Long Reach, a place famous in the annals of the P.R., and there he saw the men in the enjoyment of their contest. It was then discovered that this was the second day of the battle, and that it had lasted throughout the whole of Thursday without interruption. The inspector went for assistance and when he returned he saw a boat putting off in the river containing a large number of persons. He noted some of them, and went subsequently, in company with Superintendent Brandon, of the Kent constabulary, to the Long Reach Tavern, and there found the man Callis, covered with blood and bruises, and lying on a table insensible. The inspector removed the man to the Infirmary of the Dartford Union, where he lingered in an insensible state until Saturday afternoon, and then died.

The charge was, therefore, changed from that of a mere breach of the peace into the serious one of manslaughter, and on Saturday morning the man Conner was placed in the dock to answer the charge. He was sadly beated and bruised, his face presenting a woefully cadaverous aspect, and his head being bandaged. - Dennis Harrington, 21, a labourer, of 1, Newmarket-street, Upper Smithfield; Alfred Patten, 20, waterman, 4, Turner-street, Cartwright-street, Smithfield; and John Hicks, publican, Weaver's Arms, Baker's-row, Whitechapel, were brought up charged with being accessories. Mr. Pelham, solicitor, of London, appeared for these men, and also for Connor. - Inspector Varley, of the Thames police, deposed that between twelve and one o'clock on Friday he received information of a prize fight at Long Reach Tavern, saw Callis and Connor fighting in a ring enclosed with stakes and ropes, about 20 yards from the tavern. He saw Hicks standing near or in the ring, inciting the men to fight, and heard him call "time." The men then set to and fought. As he was going towards the ring, Hicks turned round, met him, and said, "can we finish it, sir? We have not got much more to do," Witness replied, "Certainly not; if you do not cease fighting, I shall take you all into custody," He replied, "Very well, sir, then we will knock off;" and then went to the ring and said to the fighting men, "That will do; we can't finish it, the gentlemen won't let us." They then left off fighting, and as soon as Callis left the ring he fell down insensible on the ground, and he saw them carry him into the tavern. He then went to the Erith police-station, and got assistance, and telegraphed to Superintendent Brandon to prevent them escaping across the country. He, with assistance, went to the Long Reach Tavern, and as he neared it saw a boat pull off, and on going alongside saw Connor and a number of men in it, and Sergeant Bond took Connor into custody. He saw another boat coming from the opposite shore towards the tavern, and on going alongside it saw Hicks and Patten, who were taken into custody. The men in this boat had been to Purfleet to fetch a doctor, who was with them. They then went on shore to the Tavern, where he saw Callis lying insensible on a table. He was examined by Dr. Gott, who stated that he was in a very dangerous condition, and must be removed immediately. He then, with the assistance of some of the constables of the county constabulary, removed the prisoners and the man Callis to Dartford.

The prisoners were taken to the police station, while Callis was taken to the workhouse infirmary, where he expired on Monday Morning. After he had taken Callis to the infirmary, he charged the others with committing a breach of the peace. Witness had been to the workhouse this morning  , and identified Callis as the man he saw fighting. - Cross-examined by Mr. Pelham: Would swear Hicks called out "Time," There was a great uproar, but still he would swear that Hicks was the man who cried "Time." Hicks tried to stop the fight as soon as he saw witness. - The Bench decided upon remanding the case, refusing bail, and remarked that they regarded the three men, Hicks, Harrington, and Patten, as infinitely more guilty than the other poor battered and bruised fellow whom they encouraged in this barbarism. The prisoners were then removed amidst a vast crowd, many persons nodding at and familiarly saluting them as they passed.

     From the Monmouthshire Melin and South Wales Advertiser, March 22, 1872.

The Fatal Prize Fight.

On Wednesday the coroner's inquiry into the circumstances attending the death of Thomas Callis, who died after a fight with a man named Connor, was resumed and concluded at Dartford. A verdict of manslaughter was returned against Connor and the two men Hicks and Harrington who were present aiding and abetting.
     From The Cardiff and Merthyr Guardian, Saturday, March 30, 1972.

The Fatal Prize Fight.

At the Dartford Police-court on the 25th, a well dressed young fellow, named Charles Davis, who gave his address in Leman-street, Whitechapel, was brought up on a charge of having actively participated in the prize fight at Long Reach, Kent, on the 15th of March last, which terminated in the death of one of the combatants, Thomas Callis, a cabman.
Mr.Pollard, the solicitor of the treasury, presented on behalf of the Government; the prisoner was defended by Mr. Louis Lewis. Detective-sergeant Briden, of the K division, said he found the prisoner, for the apprehension of whom he held a warrant, at the King's Arms public-house, Mile-end-road, where he was engaged at a "sparring benefit," got up in aid of the "Hicks, Connor, and Harrington Defence Fund."
These are the names of the men who already stand committed on the charge of manslaughter. Inspector Varley, of the Thames Police, said that he saw the prisoner carrying the insensible man Callis on his back to the Long Reach Tavern on the day of the fight, and a policeman of the Kent constabulary deposed that when he took the cart over for the purpose of bringing Callis to the Dartford workhouse he saw the prisoner in company with the other men in custody.
A gentleman's servant named Ellis, who was at Long Reach on pleasure, said he saw the fight going on, and he was confident that Davis was inside the ring, assisting the two men engaged in the combat. Mr. Lewis closely cross-examined this last witness, who, however, adhered to his statement. It was also shown that the prisoner was present in Surrey the preceding day, when the fight between Callis and Connor was commenced, and interrupted by the police.
After some formal medical evidence as to the cause of Callis's death, the magistrates committed the prisoner to take his trial at Maidstone for manslaughter, but admitted him to bail in a total security of 200.

     From The Cardiff Times, Saturday, June 1, 1872.

Offline CDP

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Re: pugilistic battles
« Reply #4 on: September 15, 2012, 15:01:15 »
 Item headings from The Sheerness newspaper held in the Sheerness Library.

            Illegal fight lasting 2hr-25 mins                                               1862 Mar 29th

            Fight 100 miles of London, 1,000 stake                                  1863 Mar 28th

            Fight at Queenborough 53 rounds                                             1881 Jan 16th

The solution to every problem is a.) time , or  b.) another problem.


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Re: pugilistic battles
« Reply #3 on: September 15, 2012, 09:39:24 »
My dad who was born in 1909 used to talk about the happy times he'd had at Strood Fair.  They usually had a boxing booth there and if you won you would get a money prize.  The pugilists nearly always won but they didn't want to hurt anybody too much as it put people off paying their money and getting into the ring.  On one occasion one of the local lads, who worked in Chatham Dockyard, fought and knocked out the professional but they wouldn't pay him out and ganged up on him so he had to leave.  According to my dad he came back with his mates the following day and wrecked the boxing booth. I don't know when this happened but it would have been before WW2.

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Re: pugilistic battles
« Reply #2 on: October 05, 2010, 11:16:19 »
Interesting reading anymore? Used to be a few bareknuckle fights bottom of Coney Banks, Chatham but haven't heard of any for a few years now.


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pugilistic battles
« Reply #1 on: February 20, 2010, 15:55:13 »

"BOXING - a pitched battle -
As was previously agreed on, was determined at Hearne Bay on Saturday evening last between Thomas BROWN and Robert SMITH two natives of Reculver.  The combatants fought 25 minutes in a more scientific style than usually seen, except among professed bruisers;    after 20 rounds in which many severe blows were given and received, they parted by mutual consent, and have declared a drawn battle. -  A large company of spectators was present, and many bets were speculated on the occasion, which the event made void."
(Kentish Gazette   July 12 1808 back page col.4)
A pugilistic contest took place yesterday in Lord Cowper?s Park, near this city, between WORRALL a butcher, a noted character in Canterbury, and ELLIOTT a post-boy.  The match was for a purse of Ten Pounds, but there had been some animosity between the parties, from the blustering conduct of the former.  About noon the combatents entered the ring.  MARTIN, the Jew, being second to WORRALL and LOVELL to ELLIOTT.   On the first round, WORRALL ran in with full confidence with victory, but it was soon evident that he was no match for his cool antagonist, and after 19 rounds in the space of 26 minutes, he was so severely punished as to be unable either to rise or move, in which state he was put into a cart and conveyed to his home.? (Kentish Gazette 11 May 1819 back page,  ?Canterbury?, col.4 near top)

Prize fight:    ?A severe battle at Langley Green near Colebrook took place between Mr George COULTHAM, native of Canterbury and a man by the name of HIN
ES, alias ?The Rough Countryman?.  The match has been long pending and was for 100-guineas.  They fought 24 hard rounds in 48 minutes;  when COULTHAM was declared the victor.?   
(Kentish Gazette 17 Nov 1820 back page col.3)


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