Regular price $115.00

Max Marek was a Polish-American from Chicago who earned a Notre Dame football scholarship in 1933, the same year he beat Joe Louis in the Golden Gloves finals in Boston. He thereafter billed himself as “The Man Who Beat Joe Louis.” In the 1930s, Max Marek looked like a young Brando, deeply tanned and muscular, with curly dark-brown hair. At Notre Dame, Max fought successfully in the school’s traditional amateur Bengal Bouts, which helped finance Catholic missions in Bangladesh. After leaving in 1935 to turn pro, Max took on the likes of veteran Bob Pastor, a respectable contender, and lost a close 1936 decision to John Henry Lewis, the light-heavyweight champ, in Comiskey Park. He rejected Jack Dempsey’s early advice to quit the ring “lest you get your brains scrambled.” At one point he was ranked as No. 10 heavyweight, compiling an overall record of 33 wins (10 by KO), 20 losses (only one by TKO), and 11 draws before his 1939 retirement. Marek became the Coast Guard’s chief boxing instructor in World War II and staged fight cards for that service branch. No longer an Adonis, gregarious Max had put on about 50 pounds over the years; his nose was considerably flatter. Now sporting a thick brown handlebar moustache, he was now wrestling under the name "The Polish Pride." Max Marek, who died in 1977 at age 63, has earned a profile in Chicago Boxing by J.J. Johnston and Sean Curtin, a book published by Arcadia. The authors describe Max as handsome, charismatic and “not only a good boxer but also one of the greatest characters in Chicago . . . a relentless ‘ribber.’” Offered here is a scarce signed photo of Max Marek as he looked during his wrestling days.
This is an original, 8" x 10" promotional photo of Marek as a wrestler. Boldly signed in green ink, "To my sweet friend-Dee With Love Max Marek." Light crease in upper right corner. Bold, clear image. Clean front and back. Minor edge and corner wear.

Size: 8 x 10

Condition: excellent