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The Cyber Boxing Zone Encyclopedia -- American Bare Knuckle Champion

John Carmel Heenan
(the "Benecia Boy")
BORN May 2 1835; Troy, New York (Some sources report May 2 1833)
DIED October 28 1873; Green River Station, Wyoming Territory
BURIED November 2 1873; Albany County, New York (St. Agnes Cemetery)
WEIGHT 182-195 lbs


Heenan was a clever boxer with tremendous punching power; He was also a capable wrestler

John was muscular and gained a reputation for toughness as a young man while swinging a hammer in the workshops of the Pacific Mail Steamship Company

Heenan was inducted into the Ring Boxing Hall of Fame in 1954 and the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 2002

          -Heenan defeated many local men and was recognized as an
          outstanding fighter

Dec    Joe Coburn                  New York, NY                    EX  

Mar 15 Johnny "Cocky" Woods        Boston, Ma                      EX  
Mar 17 Johnny "Cocky" Woods        Boston, Ma                      EX  
Oct 20 John Morrissey              Long Point, Canada               L 11
          -Heavyweight Championship of America;
          Heenan broke his right hand early in the
          contest and fought at a disadvantage

          -Heenan "married" Adah Isaacs Menken, a famous actress

Apr  4 John Morrissey                                              EX  

Apr 17 Tom Sayers                  Farnborough, England             D 42
          -Heenan seemed to have the advantage when the
          crowd broke into the ring

May 20 -Heenan was awarded a duplicate Championship Belt

Dec 10 Tom King                    Wadhurst, England                L 24
          -Championship of England;
          Heenan knocked King out of time in round
          eighteen but the fight continued and King
          won; Some sources report 12/8/63

Apr  4 Tom King                    Lewes, England                 SCH  
          -This fight was scheduled but cancelled;
          Some sources report 4/05/1864

Sep  4 Mike McCoole                near St. Louis, Mo             SCH  
-This fight was scheduled but cancelled

          -Heenan and Jem Mace toured America giving exhibitions

Feb 11 Jem Mace                    New York, NY                    EX  3

*** Link To Wadhurst, England (Courtesy of ***

Review courtesy of Tracy Callis, Historian, International Boxing Research Organization
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