We all, of course, have heard of this amazing fight.
Quoting the Boxing Register:
Jeannette's most famous fight occured on April 17, 1909, when he met Hall of Famer McVey in Paris. The pair had fought a lackluster bout there two months before. The dissatisfied crowd had showered the ring with programs and other debris, and rumors began to circulate that the two had treated the fight as a mere exhibition. Eager to dispel that notion, Jeannette and McVey agreed to fight to the finish with no round limit. The resulting battle was one of the greatest marathons in boxing history. McVey scored the first of his 27 knockdowns in the first round. In the sixteenth McVey countered a Jeannette uppercut with a right to the jaw that most likely would have finished Jeannette--had he not been saved by the bell. Jeannette went down in the next round, the 21st time in seventeen rounds that he had hit the canvas. Looking beaten after nineteen rounds, Jeannette miraculously revived and seized control of the fight. As the bout moved past the 40-round mark, Jeannette began to floor McVey with regularity, but still could not put him away. In the 42nd, Jeannette dropped McVey seven times. Finally, after 49 rounds, McVey could not continue. Despite having been knocked down 27 times, Jeannette had triumphed in this unbelievable test of endurance, courage, and boxing ability. This fight underscores Jeannette's indomitable will.
Beautiful story. But how true is it?
Le match Joë Jeannette-Sam Mac-Wea
Après un magnifique combat qui a duré deux heures vingt-quatre minutes, au cirque de Paris, Joë Jeannette, a été victorieux de Sam Mac-Vea qui, au 49c round, reconnaissant sa défaite, a serré la main de son adversaire et déclaré abandonner.
JEANETTE GETS THE DECISION.
McVey Fails to Respond in Forty-ninth Round.
Paris, April 17.--Joe Jeanette won the finish fight with Sam McVey to-night, the scrap going forty-ninth rounds. It was not a knockout, as McVey simply refused to respond at the beginning of the fiftieth round, declaring he "had enough." His seconds threw up the sponge. There has been intense rivalry between McVey and Jeanette, and challenges have been hurled right and left by both men, while they raked down the money in the music halls.
McVey was the favorite for to-night's fight, and he started off like a winner, putting Jeanette down for the count in the sixth round. It was a give-and-take encounter to the twentieth round, with McVey having all the better of it, but after that point he weakened, and was slammed all around the ring by Jeanette, who administered terrific punishment until the forty-ninth, when McVey quit cold. Both men were badly punished.
M'VEY MEETS DEFEAT.
Beaten in Fiftieth Round of Fight by Jeannette.
Paris, April 17.--In the greatest prizefight witnessed in France since John L. Sullivan and Charley Mitchell drew at Chantilly in 1888, Joe Jeannette, of New York, defeated Sam McVey, of California, to-night in the fiftieth round of a finish fight. A great crowd witnessed a game exhibition of heavyweights, the contest lasting for three hours and a half. McVey had the better of the fight up to the fortieth round, and in both the twenty-first and the twenty-second round he had the New Yorker so groggy that he barely could keep on his feet.
Jeannette bore the punishment bravely, and came back in a wonderful manner. McVey had almost worn himself out after forty rounds, and by this time the New York fighter was coming back. By effective infighting he gradually beat the Californian and practically had him knocked out when the fight ended. McVey's seconds throwing up the sponge. Jeannette was the favorite in the betting, and the purse was $6,000.
It is understood that Jeannette now intends to issue a challenge to Jack Johnson for the championship of the world.
THE OXYGEN TREATMENT HELPED.
That is Why Jeanette Was Fresh After Forty-Nine Rounds of Fighting.
Paris, April 19.--The Jeannette-McVey fight was one of the most interesting contests that Paris has ever seen. Jeannette's victory was mainly due to the adoption of young Corbett's method of inhaling oxygen between rounds, the first time it had been resorted to on this side of the Atlantic. The efficency of the oxygen treatment was well illustrated by its effects on Jeannette, who revived quickly after being on the verge of a knockout no less than four times during the fight. His freshness at the end of the forty-ninth round was such as to astonish the veterans of the prizering, who gathered about the ringside.