John L. Sullivan Autograph Letter Signed. Four pages with text on first and last pages, 5.25" x 6.5", penned on Hotel Grenoble letterhead, New York, May 31, 1910. Sullivan is considered the greatest and last bare-knuckle champion, although he only fought three bare knuckle bouts in his entire career (Ryan 1882, Mitchell 1888, and Kilrain 1889). However, Sullivan also fought with gloves under the Marquess of Queensberry rules as early as 1880, and is considered the first heavyweight champion of gloved boxing, from February 7, 1882 to 1892. Here, the great boxer writes to John Wilson, inviting Wilson to see him while he is in town. In part: "Your letter reached me at the hotel where I am stopping. Myself and wife will be delighted to see you old pal, at any time before two in the day.... Don't tell anyone where I am." Written following Sullivan's official retirement (although he later appeared in several exhibitions, including a final two-rounder against Jim McCormick in 1905), when he followed various careers including actor, speaker, celebrity baseball umpire, sports reporter, and bar owner. Boldly penned and in very fine condition.

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    Auction Dates
    October, 2008
    16th-18th Thursday-Saturday
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