Ultimate History of Pro Wrestling - A Time Line of Every Major Event in Pro Wrestling History - 1917

By: Karl Stern (@wiwcool)

Much of the text of this entry comes from issue 82 of the DragonKing Press Newsletter available as a downloadable .pdf in the digital downloads section.


04-09-1917: Joe Stecher forfeits the World championship to Earl Caddock after refusing to finish a match in Omaha, NE. Caddock serves in the U.S. infantry in World War I and Stecher in the Navy. The title lay undefended through much of the war.

04-20-1917: Frank Schuler, a San Francisco promoter, sues Ad Santel and Joe Stecher alleging he had overpaid them $150.

04-25-1917: Ad Santel defeats Farmer Stanton in San Francisco. Following the match Santel is accosted by an IRS agent for not paying state taxes.

05-01-1917: Frank Gotch wrestles his last match in Chicago, IL defeating Leo Pardello in a one fall match. A crowd of 10,000 was on hand.

05-02-1917: Ed “Strangler” Lewis defeats John Olin for a version of the world title in Chicago, IL. His billing as World champion is based on Olin’s win over Joe Stecher in 1916. Frank Gotch is the referee.

06-05-1917: Wladek Zbyszko defeats Ed “Strangler” Lewis for his version of the world title in San Francisco.

07-04-1917: Ed “Strangler” Lewis recaptures the off-shoot world title from Wladek Zbyszko in Boston, MA.

09-14-1917: Clarence Eklund defeats Elmer “Pet” Brown in Houston, TX for the World lightweight title.

12-16-1917: Frank Gotch dies from uremic poisoning at his home in Humboldt, IA. He was 40 years old.

12-17-1917: Wladek Zbyszko wins a tournament in New York pinning Ed “Strangler” Lewis thus claiming his version of the world title.

12-19-1917: Frank Gotch is buried in Humboldt, IA with Iowa Governor W.L. Harding delivering the eulogy.

1917 (unspecified): Jim Londos makes his pro debut.

Frank Gotch dead.jpg

Frank Gotch - Dead.

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