JACK BRITTON was a masterful, stand-up boxer who paced himself carefully and was able to campaign for 25 years before ending his career in 1930 at the age of 44. Billed as “The Boxing Marvel”, Britton is well known for his amazing series of 20 bouts with Britain’s Ted “Kid” Lewis, exchanging the world welterweight title along the way. Most of these matches were officially No Decision bouts but in 1915, in their second meeting, Lewis won the 12-round decision to win the world welterweight title. There was bad blood between the rivals as they exchanged threats and refused the customary handshake before the bout.
For the next six years the two men monopolised the championship. The title passed to Britton in 1916 when he won a 20-round decision in New Orleans. Lewis regained it in 1917 but two years later Britton scored the only inside the distance win between the rivals when he knocked out Lewis in the ninth round to regain the title once more. Lewis later claimed he had climbed out of his sick bed to fight believing that the light-punching Britton would not be able to stop him.
Their final bout ended in a 15-round points win for Britton in 1921. Overall, Britton won the series by four bouts to three with one draw and 12 No Decisions. They were amazing times. In 1917 Britton and Lewis fought four times in a row in a five week period while a year later, between May 2, 1918 and June 25, Britton fought seven times which included two of his fights with Lewis and his first against lightweight legend Benny Leonard.