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Sun, 03.20.1853

George Godfrey, Boxing pioneer born

George Godfrey

*George Godfrey was born on this date in 1853. He was a Black Canadian boxer.

From the Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island (P.E.I.) neighborhood known as “The Bog” he left P.E.I. in his youth and worked as a porter in Boston, Massachusetts. It was there that he started training to box at Professor Bailey’s Hub City gym.  At age 26, Godfrey began fighting competitively in the bare knuckles tour.

He and made his professional boxing debut at Harry Hill’s notorious music hall, winning his first fight. At 5’ 10" in height and 175 pounds in weight, George "Old Chocolate" (his nickname) Godfrey went on to become the World Colored Heavyweight Champion, fighting in more than 100 bouts. George Godfrey died August 18, 1901.

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Poetry Corner

O’ de wurl’ ain’t flat,An’ de wurl’ ain’t roun’,H’it’s one long stripHangin’ up an’ down—Jes’ Souf an’ Norf;Jes’ Norf an’ Souf. —from Ariel Williams Holloway, “Northboun'” , 1926 “NORTHBOUND'” by Ariel Williams Holloway
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