Nathaniel S. Fleischer is best known for founding The Ring magazine in 1922. He published this “Bible of Boxing” until his death in 1972. Born in New York on November 3, 1887, Fleischer grew up participating in a variety of sports including boxing. He graduated from City College of New York in 1908, then worked for the New York Press while pursuing studies at New York University. He left NYU after causing an explosion in the chemistry lab.
Fleischer eventually became sports editor of the Press and, when the newspaper merged with the Morning Sun, Fleischer became sports editor of the reconstituted Sun Press. As the paper’s owner, Frank A. Munsey, bought a succession of newspapers, Fleischer became sports editor of each until 1929, when he left to devote full attention to his magazine. The Ring quickly became the authoritative voice on boxing.
In addition to the magazine, Fleischer published Nat Fleischer’s Ring Record Book and Boxing Encyclopedia annually, beginning in 1941. The record book continued to be published until 1987. Fleischer also wrote many books about boxing, including Black Dynamite, a series on great African-American boxers; a history of the heavyweight championship; an autobiography; a history of wrestling; and several technical boxing manuals.
Fleischer was one of the founders of the Boxing Writers Association and twice received its James J. Walker Award for Long and Meritorious Service to Boxing.
He died on June 25, 1972.
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Excerpted with permission from 'The Boxing Register' by James B. Roberts and Alexander G. Skutt, copyright © 1999 by McBooks Press. All rights reserved.
Born: Nov. 3, 1887
Died: June 25, 1972