Dixie Brown

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Dixie Brown
Dixie Brown.jpg
Dixie Brown, c. 1930
Born Anthony George Charles
27 June 1900
Castries, Saint Lucia
Died April 20, 1957(1957-04-20) (aged 56)
Bristol
Nationality British
Occupation Boxer

Anthony George Charles (born 27 June 1900 in Castries, Saint Lucia;[1] died 20 April 1957) was a boxer, commonly known as Dixie Brown. He worked on the construction of the Panama Canal[2] and emigrated to Cardiff, Wales in 1919. In the West Country of England, he survived by working as a bare-knuckle boxer in fairground booths. He moved with his wife, Lily Sellick, to Bristol in 1923, and registered as a professional boxer, fighting 85 bouts in the 1920s and '30s, as welterweight and middleweight. He trained at the White Horse in Milk Street.[3] He could not contest any British championships owing to the colour bar then in operation.[4] He had two wins, both over one-time champion Billy Green, five losses and two draws in his professional career.[5]

Brown started family life in the "tough neighbourhood" of Philadelphia Street, St Jude's. He was blinded in a fight in the 1930s and then moved with his family to Knowle West, Bristol after the Blitz.[6] A collection was made to send him to the Catholic shrine of Lourdes in France, in search of a cure.[4] He was visited by many African American soldiers during the Second World War, as they respected him as "a well known and a much admired character".[1] Brown had nine children and thirty grandchildren. One of his grandsons used to take him to his local public house, the Venture Inn, where he had his own special chair.[6] He was popular and well respected throughout Bristol. Brown died in 1957 and is buried in Holy Souls Catholic Cemetery next door to Arnos Vale Cemetery in Bristol.[1] Bristol historian Madge Dresser described him as "a family man who founded a virtual dynasty of Bristolians of mixed heritage, all of whom remember him with fondness."[4]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "Dixie Brown Biography" (PDF). Bristol Ethnic Minority Achievement Service. 2009. p. 17–18. Retrieved 9 July 2011. 
  2. ^ Staff (17 October 2009). "2nd generation offspring of famed UK boxer visits St Lucia". The Voice, Saint Lucia. Retrieved 9 July 2011. 
  3. ^ Wilson, R. (29 June 1999). "We could make a book about the Pomphreys and boxing" (Subscription required). Bristol Times (Bristol Evening Post, archived at LexisNexis). p. 6–7. Retrieved 9 July 2011. 
  4. ^ a b c "Dixie Brown" (PDF). cliftondiocese.com. 2007. Retrieved 9 July 2011. 
  5. ^ "Dixie Brown - Boxer". boxrec.com. 2011. Retrieved 9 July 2011. 
  6. ^ a b "Dixie Brown". explore.englandspastforeveryone.org.uk. 2011. Retrieved 9 July 2011. 

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