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Denver, CO, United States
DoneSat, Mar 5, 2005 8:00 PM GMT

World Champ Boxer, Joe Louis Career Albums

The Joe Louis personal albums document Louis’s career. This collection consists of 64 large leather bound volumes with Joe Louis’s name engraved on each of them. This collection consists of newspaper clippings from Joe Louis’s career from 1935 to 1941. Sixteen volumes from this collection are in The Smithsonian Institute Archives Center in Washington, DC. They had been donated by Louis’s former manager Julian Black’s Family along with other historic pieces.

The albums contain newspaper clippings and other materials from throughout the United States and other countries from 1935 to 1941 and articles from Ring Magazine. This collection documents the Joe Louis fights from June 25, 1935 through 1941, including championship fights from June 22, 1937 through September 29, 1941.

The albums were assembled with great care using high quality binding paper. The clippings are neatly mounted and show great attention to detail. All clippings are identified by the name of the newspaper, day of the week, date, author, artist or photographer. Clippings include full length articles and brief sketches, cartoons, photographs, records and statistics of the boxers. The clippings are grouped in volumes by each of Louis’s fights and arranged chronologically there under.

Hundreds of major newspapers throughout the United States and other countries are represented in the albums. Coverage extends from very large metropolitan dailies to small town newspaper. Among the newspapers represented are titles as diverse as: Akron Beacon Journal; Daily Colonist, Victoria, British Columbia; Shreveport Times; Tribune Tulsa; and the Worchester Daily Telegraph; N.Y. Staats – Zeitung Und Herold, Donnerstag; etc. Many of the German newspapers were destroyed during the war and others are not in existence today.

Louis became one of America’s most celebrated sports figures both for his extraordinary boxing skills and for his role as a symbol of national pride, especially in his bouts with the German Champion Max Schmeling. His national respect and International prominence stood in ironic contrast to the Nation’s legal and social practices of racial segregation. This collection is truly a national treasure.

While these albums are about the Joe Louis fights, there is a wealth of material on many other people connected with boxing in this period, including all of Joe Louis’s opponents, his trainer, his managers, his promoter Mike Jacobs, and most of the sports reporters and writers of the time. Anyone of any importance connected with boxing during this period can be found in the pages of these volumes. There are also retrospective articles on earlier boxers and historically important fights.