A long-overdue tribute to legendary African American sportswriter and boxing cartoonist Ted Carroll.
Ted Carroll was one of the greatest American artists and sportswriters of the twentieth century, most notably as a boxing cartoonist and journalist. As a Black man working in an era when boxing was one of the few outlets where Black athletes could achieve wealth, success, and recognition, Carroll’s commentary on the sport provides a profound perspective on race and the history of boxing.
In A Boxing Legacy: The Life and Works of Writer and Cartoonist Ted Carroll, Ian Phimister and David Patrick celebrate Carroll’s extraordinary achievements as a sports cartoonist, illustrator, painter, and writer. Beginning with an introduction to Carroll’s life and times, Phimister and Patrick then dive into Carroll’s work, reproducing 44 of his best articles contributed to The Ring magazine—the bible of boxing. Arranged thematically, each section of articles includes an overview discussing the selections and providing valuable historical context. Included in the collection is the significant series “The American Black Man in Boxing,” which explores race, sport, and society.
Ted Carroll’s insightful articles illuminate the place of boxing in twentieth-century sport and society with incredible skill and care. The first extended account of Ted Carroll’s life and works, and profusely illustrated with his brilliant drawings, A Boxing Legacy finally provides the deserved recognition to a remarkable artist and author who has been overlooked for far too long.
Ian Phimister and David Patrick are both members of the International Studies Group at the University of the Free State (South Africa). Ian has written widely on African and world history, while David's research interests focus on media representations of historical phenomena, including mass violence and contemporary politics. He is the author of Reporting Genocide: Media, Mass Violence and Human Rights. Ian and David share an obsessive interest in professional boxing.
Section I: Profiling the Greats
Joe A Real Champ Has Met ‘Em All
Marciano, the Human Blockbuster, Has Experts Wondering What Style Would Stop Rocky?
Mickey Walker: D’Artagnan of the Ring
Billy Conn, The Collar Ad Hero
Ray Robinson: The Greatest Champion Since 1922?
How Would Clay Have Done Against Stars Of Past?
The Man In The Broadway Window, Matchless Dempsey
Was Greb Really Best Fighter for His Pounds?
Section II: Here, There and Everywhere
South America in Pugilism
New York Stars
British Prestige Booms
The Fighting Irish
Men of Africa!
The Italians: Past and Present, Hold Special Niche in Boxing History
Philly’s Fight History Features Greats Galore
Japanese Boxing, Born In 1905, Has Enjoyed Spectacular Success
Der Mox, Once Champion, Still Germany’s No. 1 Idol
Jewish Fighters Have Achieved Fame Beyond Their Limited Numbers
Section III: African American Boxing
Sepian Sockers Supreme
Sable Sockers to the Fore
Boxing Sets Pace in Fair Play
"Dark Hopes" Showed Great Boxers with Pittance Pay
I. The American Black Man and Boxing
II. Johnson, Gans, Walcott and Langford Salient as Negro Stars Embellished Ring Annals
III. The Joe Louis Era
IV. Television Helped Vastly in Destroying Colour Line; Robinson Reign Spectacular
V. Charles, Patterson Too Quiet; Liston Too Involved; Then Came Brash Mr Clay
VI. Clay's Rise to Championship Climax of Negro Takeover In Heavyweight Excitement
VII. Negro Achievements Galore in Boxing Have Battered Down Old Racial Barriers
Section IV: Brains vs Brawn
Puncher Always Has a Chance
Stamina Is A Great Ring Asset
Secrets of Hitting
Age vs. Experience
Every Fistic Great Has Style Nemesis
KOs Thrill But The Name Of The Game Is Boxing And Buchanan Proves It
Section V: Fighters and Fans
Clean Living Fighters Scorn Father Time
The Manager’s Role
The Art of Training
Food For Thought
When Is A Boy A Man?
One Fight Too Many…
Training…Men vs. Women
Not All Fighters End Up Broke
Do Fans Make Brutality?
Appendix: Complete listing of Ted Carroll’s published articles for The Ring (1936 – 1972)
About the Editors
Ted Carroll was one of the most important artists of the twentieth century. Carroll, a Black man, was the cartoonist for The Ring for fifty years, offering commentary on the sport of boxing complete with all of its social implications. He was overlooked for years, not because of the quality of his work, but for the color of his skin. Finally we have a long overdue and proper tribute to this truly great artist.
Ian Phimister and David Patrick have made an invaluable and novel contribution to the already rich body of boxing literature by shedding much-needed light on the long and distinguished career of African American master boxing cartoonist Ted Carroll, largely in his own words and images. Carroll, who drew and wrote for Ring Magazine for over 35 years, has never received the credit he deserves, even among his peers. Notably not until 2013, some 40 years after his death in 1973, did Carroll enter the International Boxing Hall of Fame. Phimister and Patrick's study will go a long way toward demonstrating Carroll's significant value in the history of boxing.
11/19/22, Publishers Weekly: This book was featured in a roundup of diverse reads.
11/29/22, Sports Book Reviews: This book was highlighted in a roundup of highly anticipated sports books.
1/12/23, Choice: This book was featured in a roundup of forthcoming titles in art & architecture.