Saturday, October 14, 2017


Herriman Saturday

Monday, May 17 1909 -- Herriman is referring to a 39-round fight that happened way back on December 30 1908 between Al Kaufman and Jim Barry at Jeffries' Arena. Barry's corner threw in the towel early (it was a 45-round scheduled fight) because their fighter had reportedly broken his hands (!!!!) back in the 30th round and could no longer punch, but just dance around. I'm not sure what his point is about the referee. Any boxing history buffs who can decode this cartoon?


For what it's worth, the referee was Charles Eyton (based on a December 28, 1908 article in the SF Call I located), and he seems to have been a respected referee, to the point where there's even a tobacco card of him (in the T218 series). He also seems to have refereed championship bouts after 1908, so it's not yet clear to me what might have gone wrong. He has a wiki entry:
I've found an account of the fight in the December 31, 1908 issue of the Los Angeles Herald. From reading the account, it seems that Eyton stopped the fight when Barry's corner threw in the towel, much to Barry's own dismay. It doesn't say so explicitly, but I think this must have been a controversial decision in the 39th round, and I can imagine the crowd was not happy. It was, supposedly, a great fight, based on what I see in the account. Eyton was Australian by birth, which may explain part of the gag in the upper left corner of the second panel; that also might be the towel being thrown in.
(1) He's actually New Zealand by birth, but lived in Australia.

(2) Here's a copy of the 1910 tobacco card (front and back) that shows Eyton, so you can compare it to the caricature:
Geez, hard to believe there'd be carping FIVE MONTHS later about a fight being ended after 39 of 45 rounds. And why blame the ref when the guy's own sidemen apparently threw in the towel?

Well, at least I now get the Australia angle!

Thanx, Allan
Post a Comment

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

Subscribe to
Posts [Atom]