William "Jack" Harrison Dempsey

Alexis Bellis

Jack Dempsey

William Harrison Dempsey was born on July 24, 1895 in Manassa, Colorado, USA. His hometown is Salt Lake City, Utah, USA. When he was younger him and his brothers idol-ed John L. Sullivan and Jack Dempsey, his older brothers, Bernie and Johnny, pushed him to become a professional boxer and to adopt the name Jack Dempsey because they all idol-ed him. When he was 16, he dropped out of school to go work as a laborer in various Colorado railroad stations and mining camps. With the free time that he had, he would go to the saloons and make side bets and fight. everyone that he fought tended to be bigger than him, he only weighed 150 pounds, and gained the nickname "Kid Blackie" because of his jet black hair. As he became more popular he ended up losing the name and it’s now left in history. in about 1913, he had his first money organized fight against a man by the name of Freddy Woods, in Montrose, Colorado. Around June 31, 1916, he was is need for food and cash so he fought John Lester Johnson and experienced what he called "the hardest punch I ever took" and the hit broke 3 of his ribs. With nothing else to do he went on his way back to Salt Lake City and found some more labor jobs, and he found a girl by the name of Maxine Cates and she was a prostitute. His boxing career went to a stand still until he found Jack "Docs" Kearns and he brought back the momentum and the fight back into Dempsey. Kearns got him a fight with the internationally known Fireman jim Flynn, this fight would be the only knock out of his career, but a couple days before the fight he claimed that he hurt his hand but went on with the fight for the money. A hit to the right side of his jaw in the first 10 seconds of the fight put Dempsey on the ground and left him with the only knockout he will ever receive in his career. Afterwards, he had made several upon others, he held 6 defending wins in the championship. Him and his wife got a divorce and then he got married to Estelle Taylor but ended up getting another divorce because he needed the money. He was known as the most successful athlete of the "Golden Age of Sports." He was included into the Boxing Hall of Fame in 1954. He retired in 1927 after he lost his championship match.