Raoul le Boucher

Posted on Tuesday, April 13th, 2021 by John Wood
Raoul le Boucher (The Butcher) as he looked in later 1901 as the heavyweight wrestling champion of France. This shot was taken in Paul Pons’ gym in Paris. The vast majority of the images of famous strongmen and wrestlers were taken here in the early 20th century as it was essentially the center of the “strongman” world in the day.

Pons had an untold number of globe barbells and dumbbells to train with, plus a sandpit floor so that the globes would not be damaged should they be dropped. Look closely and you’ll also see a poster in the background for “The 4 Cliftons” a traveling troupe of acrobats.

All Contents, Including Images and Text, Copyright © 2005-2019 by John Wood and Thunderdome Media Inc., Not to be reproduced without permission, All Rights Reserved
Author: John Wood. All contents, including images and text, copyright © 2005-2019 by John Wood and Thunderdome Media Inc. Not to be reproduced without permission. All rights reserved. We will most likely grant permission but please contact us if you would like to repost. IMPORTANT: Equipment and books, courses etc. pictured in blog posts are generally not available for sale unless specifically noted.

Giovanni Raicevich

Posted on Thursday, August 16th, 2018 by John Wood
Giovanni Raicevich was an Italian professional wrestler known for his great strength. He won many international tournaments and two world championships in 1907 (defeating Laurent le Beaucairois.) and 1909 (defeating Paul Pons). Raicevich fought (but lost to) Frank Gotch in November of 1909 in a 2-out-of-3 falls match. Raicevich retired after his last professional match, a win against Hans Kavan, in 1929. His brothers were Roberto Massimo and Emilio Ruggerio Raičević who were also champion wrestlers.
All Contents, Including Images and Text, Copyright © 2005-2019 by John Wood and Thunderdome Media Inc., Not to be reproduced without permission, All Rights Reserved
Author: John Wood. All contents, including images and text, copyright © 2005-2019 by John Wood and Thunderdome Media Inc. Not to be reproduced without permission. All rights reserved. We will most likely grant permission but please contact us if you would like to repost. IMPORTANT: Equipment and books, courses etc. pictured in blog posts are generally not available for sale unless specifically noted.

Three Wrestlers

Posted on Tuesday, August 8th, 2017 by John Wood
A Trio of early wrestlers, from left to right: Paul Pons, Raoul “Le Boucher” (The Butcher) Musson and Ivan Shemyakin. This rare shot was most likely taken at “Le tournoi annue de lutta de la Ceinture d’or” held at the Folies-Bergere in 1904.
All Contents, Including Images and Text, Copyright © 2005-2019 by John Wood and Thunderdome Media Inc., Not to be reproduced without permission, All Rights Reserved
Author: John Wood. All contents, including images and text, copyright © 2005-2019 by John Wood and Thunderdome Media Inc. Not to be reproduced without permission. All rights reserved. We will most likely grant permission but please contact us if you would like to repost. IMPORTANT: Equipment and books, courses etc. pictured in blog posts are generally not available for sale unless specifically noted.

Nikola Petroff

Posted on Sunday, September 6th, 2015 by John Wood
Here’s a rare shot of the great Bulgarian wrestling champion, Nikola Petroff and, like most wrestlers of the day, Petroff was impressive from a physique standpoint as well. Petroff became the World Greco-Roman champion in 1900 by defeating Paul Pons. Over his 25 year career, Petroff only suffered defeat once, and it was at the hands of Marijan Matijevic.
All Contents, Including Images and Text, Copyright © 2005-2019 by John Wood and Thunderdome Media Inc., Not to be reproduced without permission, All Rights Reserved
Author: John Wood. All contents, including images and text, copyright © 2005-2019 by John Wood and Thunderdome Media Inc. Not to be reproduced without permission. All rights reserved. We will most likely grant permission but please contact us if you would like to repost. IMPORTANT: Equipment and books, courses etc. pictured in blog posts are generally not available for sale unless specifically noted.

Magnus Bech-Olsen

Posted on Saturday, May 4th, 2013 by John Wood

Magnus Bech-Olsen

Denmark-born Magnus Bech-Olsen won the wrestling world championship in 1892 and held the title until 1903. During his competitive years, Bech-Olsen had many memorable battles with the likes of Karl Abs, Stanislaus Zbyszko, Alex Aberg, Antonie Pierri,Paul Pons, “Ursus” Jankowski, Paul Belling, Ernst Roeber, Constant Le Marin and even Frank Gotch. A few years after retiring from wrestling, Bech Olsen established his own traveling circus.