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Although retiring close to the turn of the century, he did agree to several exhibition matches while a student instructor at Multnomah Athletic Club in Portland, Oregon. tall, and his wrestling weight was about 150 pounds.
In one of his final matches, at age 59, Action faced Tokugoro Ito in a jacketed wrestling match at the Grand Opera House in Seattle, Washington on 11 May, 1911. 8 June 1882 2.) Lewis and Acton: “The Strangler Finally Gets The Better of His Famous Adversary,” Chicago Tribune 12 April 1887 3.) “World Catch as Catch Can Heavyweight Title (19th Century)- Puroresu Dojo 2003 Tom Connors (16 February, 1861 – 1939) A Strong Man Who Claimed Highest Honors in the Middle Weight Class. He was a splendid specimen of the fully developed athlete, and had a chest measurement of forty-two inches.
Born in Ridgeway, Wisconsin, Lewis began wrestling professionally by winning a 64-man tournament in Montana in May 1882.
He returned to Wisconsin and defeated Ben Knight for the Wisconsin Heavyweight Championship in a Mineral Point match on March 20, 1883.
They had two much-ballyhooed, largely attended Chicago bouts in 1886; in the first, Lewis roughly strangled Sorakichi into submission.
Sorakichi implored Lewis to wrestle again, but this time with the strangle barred. Sorakichi emphasized how serious he was about the stipulation.
Although he had previous experience in jujitsu-style fighting having faced British judoka Yukio Tanai in 1904, he lost to Ito in two bouts, in three and two minutes respectively. Tom Connors, once middle weight champion wrestler of the world, was born in Wigan, Lancashire, England, the famous nursery of catch-as-catch-can wrestlers, Feb. Connors had perhaps the best record of any wrestler that ever lived, as out of 110 matches he only suffered defeat on three occasions.
Tom wrestled his first match in 1873, when 11 years old.
Acton is one of a handful of wrestlers credited with introducing “Catch-as-Catch-Can” wrestling, with its roots in old Lancashire wrestling, to the United States.
He toured the United States that same year facing several prominent wrestlers including Edwin Bibby, Arkansas Heavyweight Champion Clarence Whistler, and Matsada Sorakichi as well as several rematches against Tom Connors and was widely regarded as the best wrestler in America by 1887, even though he lost the American “Catch-as-Catch-can” Championship bout to Evan “Strangler” Lewis on 14 March 1887 in one of the biggest matches of the decade.
Acton would also face Australian bare-knuckle boxer William Miller in a series of wrestling matches in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania between March and July 1888 as well as Bob Fitzsimmons in 1891.
He then weighed only sixty-five pounds, and his opponent, a 15—year-old youth named Paddy Gorman, had a great advantage in height and weight; but Gorman fell as easy prey to the young gladiator. 8, 1883, and about two months after his arrival he met Acton in a match for the world’s championship at Pastime park, Philadelphia, and suffered his first defeat.
From then till he reached his twentieth birthday he had wrestled fifty-eight matches without sustaining a single defeat. 13, 1882, he defeated Ike Smith in a match for the championship, Smith having previously wrested the title from Joe Acton, the “Little Demon.” Ike, not being satisfied, challenged Connors to another meeting, which occurred two months later. He returned to England in July of the same year, where he remained till Sept. Arriving in New York nine days later, he issued a Challenge to Joe Acton or any other man in America.