111 years ago today in Boxing History: August 13, 1903
Frankie Neil KO 2 Harry Forbes, San Francisco. Neil wins World Bantamweight Title.
On August 13, 1903 at Mechanic’s Pavilion in San Francisco world bantamweight champion Harry Forbes defended his title against an old foe, Frankie Neil. Neil knocked Forbes out in the 2nd round to win the title. Forbes was down three times and counted out in the second round.
Neil was a scrappy boxer who carried a good punch that provided most of his wins and enabled him to capture the Bantamweight and Featherweight Championship of the World.
Frankie Neil lost all his boxing earnings by investing in a large stable of race horses after he retired. “What I didn’t blow taking care of the animals, I lost at the track. The combination cleaned my pockets good,” he told Ed Levitt of the Oakland Tribune.
It was erroneously reported that he had died of pneumonia at St. Paul’s Hospital, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, on December 19, 1924. But Neil was alive and well and working at the Standard Oil plant in Richmond, California at the time, and quipped: “I admit I am a dead one pugilistically but I’m still doing my eight hours a day.” Oakland Tribune
111 year old photo of Frankie Neil vs. Harry Forbes August 13, 1903, San Francisco. Neil wins World Bantamweight Title.