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Posts Tagged ‘Earl Caddock’

Wrestling legend Earl Caddock is honored in Walnut, Iowa.

Posted by flairwhoooooo on July 24, 2012

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Mike Chapman (holding sign at left), author of the book Caddock: Walnut’s Wrestling Wonder, and Walnut Mayor Gene Larsen (far right) stand with members of the Earl Caddock family during a dedication ceremony held June 17 in Walnut, Iowa.

On June 17, the small town of Walnut, Iowa, honored former world champion Earl Caddock by naming a street after him. Earl Caddock Memorial Drive runs for several blocks in the southern part of the town, right past a brick building that Caddock owned in the 1920s and sold cars from. As an amateur, Caddock was a three-time AAU national wrestling champion and was undefeated in  53 matches. He was discovered by Frank Gotch and Farmer Burns. When the 1916 Olympics were cancelled by World War I, Caddock turned professional.

Caddock won the world heavyweight championship from Joe Stecher in Omaha on April 9, 1917,  and was champion for three years. He was known as a master catch wrestler and was called “The man of a thousand holds”.  Caddock fought in France during World War I and suffered lung damage from a gas attack. He returned to wrestle for two more years, then became a prosperous businessman. He died of cancer in 1950 at the age of 62 and is buried in Walnut, a town of 800 people.

Many old-time wrestling experts consider Caddock one of the finest wrestlers of all time. “He was an inspiration to the youth of America,” wrote Nat Fleixher, the top wrestling writer of the 1930s and ’40s. “During his entire career, he exemplified the best in American sports tradition. And when the history of wrestling is written, I shall see that Earl Caddock’s name goes up near the top for his wrestling ability, and on top as the man who has done most for the uplift of wrestling in this country.”

Earl Cadddock cover

The City of Walnut worked with author Mike Chapman to publish the book “Caddock” Walnut’s Wrestling Wonder” and nearly a dozen Caddock family members returned to Walnut on June 17 for the street dedication. Chapman gave a speech about Caddock’s legacy in the world of wrestling and across the state of Iowa. Now  there is talk of erecting a statue of Earl Caddock in Walnut, as Humboldt did recently for Frank Gotch.

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MWR Book Review: Caddock Walnut’s Wrestling Wonder by Mike Chapman

Posted by flairwhoooooo on March 13, 2012

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Review by MWR Owner/Editor Brian Kelley

Judge this book not by the size of the book but the content that is in it. In the early days of wrestling the Midwest was proud to have men such as Frank Gotch and Joe Stetcher to be recognized as World Champion. Gotch set the bar and Stetcher proved to be one of the top wrestlers of his time.

Yet, in a little town on the far western side of the state of Iowa, a young man by the name of Earl Caddock was destined to not only be a champion in the world of wrestling, but also an American hero who actually enlisted in the Army while he was “the” World Champion to fight for our rights during World War I and was inducted into the Army on December 17th. 1917.

This wonderful book takes you back in time to document the historic wrestling career of Earl Caddock as he would earn respect starting with the  AAU National title. During his pro career Caddock fought several of the toughest men to ever live such as Ed “Strangler” Lewis, Stanislaus Zbyszko and Joe Stetcher . The book features some wonderful photos of the top wrestlers of that era and life in the Midwest during his lifetime.

His time in the ring is well documented and there is even a complete Professional record of his matches added to allow you to see just how dominating he truly was.

One of my favorite quotes in the book are on page 57 where a sportswriter in the east stated that “Of all the sports figures in this country, only the World Heavyweight Champion, Earl Caddock, has demonstrated true courage and leadership by showing his willingness to fight for his country.

Earl Caddock deserves to be remembered for being a Veteran during World War 1, a Champion in world of wrestling, and a devoted family man that lived the American dream.

Mike Chapman delivers once again with this book in honoring a man who deserves to not be forgotten, no matter the years that go by.

I highly encourage you to pick up this to add to your wrestling collection of books or just for a great read on a man who gave life everything he had.
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The 88-page book includes 35 photos and newspaper articles, many not seen for 80 years, and Caddock’s complete professional record.

The cost is $7.95 plus $3 shipping and handling. It is available by ordering through Culture House, P.O. Box 293, Newton, IA 50208, or by calling 641-791-3072, or at the city hall in Walnut, Iowa.

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Is NWA World Champion Adam Pearce’s “Last Ride” tour about to come to a screeching halt due to “The Belt Collector” Jeremy Wyatt?

Posted by flairwhoooooo on January 16, 2012

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NWA World Champion Adam Pearce’s t-shirt as he makes his world tour.

By Brian Kelley

The prestigious NWA World title returns to where it all began as the NWA World Champion Adam Pearce comes to Des Moines, Iowa on January 27th in action at the 2-time MWR promotion of the Year 3XWrestling.

 Adam Pearce has been the NWA World Champion since July 31st when he won the NWA World Heavyweight Championship for the fourth time by defeating Chance Prophet, Jimmy Rave and Shaun Tempers in a four-way match to win the vacant title.

It’s a shame that Pearce, a veteran of the sport for over 16 years has never received the just do that the man of his talents deserves. While the NWA title and the organization thrived for years under the management of the likes of Sam Muchnick, times have changed and the NWA has seen dark days for the type of wrestling that made me a fan of the sport.

With his years of experience in the ring and a desire to bring back the glory of the NWA World Title Adam Pearce has embarked on what he calls his “Last Ride tour”. 

His last trip to the Midwest was memorable to say the least as he made his way to Kansas City for Metro Pro Wrestling. The Challenger was Michael Strider, the setting a packed house at the Turner Rec Center on November 5th, 2011. 

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Steven J Girthy and NWA Central States Champion Jeremy Wyatt make their claim for the NWA World title. (Photo Credit Brian Kelley)

Earlier in the night at Metro Pro Wrestling, Jeremy Wyatt and his manager Steven J Girthy would let the fans know that it was he who deserved a match against Adam Pearce. Bringing to the ring  Wyatt read the hype surrounding him in the year 2011 including the KC Star where they ranked him the #1 wrestler in Kansas City and copies of the MWR article “Does Steven J Girthy have Jeremy Wyatt poised to become the NWA Champion of the World on Nov 5th at Metro Pro Wrestling ?”

Yet, it would be a classic matchup in the main event as  Strider looked to have earned his boyhood dream to become the NWA World Champion when he pinned Pearce as referee  Michael Crase Jr. counted 1-2-3.

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The fans were ecstatic to see Michael Strider go for the NWA title in November at Metro Pro Wrestling. (Photo Credit Bill Smith)

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Strider look to land the big move that would give the former NWA Central States champion his dream to become the NWA World Champion. (Photo Credit Bill Smith)

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Strider the NWA World Champion??? (Photo Credit Bill Smith)

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Matt Murphy, then the MPW comish goaded Strider to continue the match due to Pearce’s feet to be supposedly under the ropes. (Photo Credit Bill Smith)

While Strider went to celebrate with his fans and father, out to the ring came MPW commissioner Matt Murphy. Murphy claimed that Pearce’s feet were on the bottom of the ropes as Crase Jr. made the final third count to the mat.

 Murphy on the mic taunted Strider stating that “You don’t want to win the title like that; you want to be a man and win it like a Champion.”

Strider unwisely would make the decision to not take the title that way and agreed to have the match continue. It would be minutes later that Pearce would benefit a little assistance from Murphy when he tripped Strider, allowing Pearce to strike and use a roll up with his feet on the ropes to retain the title.

The next day I would travel to Collinsville, Illinois to cover Ring of Honor where fans came up to me, asking if in fact Michael Strider had become the NWA Worlds Heavyweight Champion as they had seen on the NWA website, then was deleted as the NWA webmaster caught word of what had occurred.  Unfortunately, I had to deliver the bad news that Pearce along with Murphy had stolen the Worlds Championship from the former NWA Central States Champion Strider.

Little did we know how someone’s missed opportunities would allow Wyatt to get his wish at the NWA world title.

Fast forward to the final show of the year at 3Xrestling on December 30th.  3XWrestling Champion Jeremy Wyatt loses a close match against Mark Sterling after the “Iron Man” used the ringside bell to help Sterling began his first 3XWrestling title reign.

In the locker room, 3XWrestling camera’s captured Todd Countryman offering Sterling the contract. Let’s watch this once more to see how Wyatt and not Sterling received this dream match against the World Champion Adam Pearce.

So mark your calendars, ask for the day off, and make your way to Des Moines, Iowa at ALL PLAY as the Champion of the World Adam Pearce comes to defend his title against the 2-time 3XW Champion Wyatt. Wyatt is currently the NWA Central States Champion and only the 3rd man in the history of the NWA to hold both the NWA Central States and the NWA Missouri title (He did this last year, Harley Race and Bob Orton being the other two men) Jeremy Wyatt.

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Only the third man to hold the NWA Central States and Missouri Championship at the same time, Jeremy Wyatt(Photo Credit Brian Kelley)

Though Adam Pearce used some underhand tactics to defeat Strider at Metro Pro Wrestling, make no doubt about it that he can defeat Wyatt in many many ways. Pearce in the past has successfully defended the NWA World Heavyweight Championship against Bryan Danielson (WWE’S Daniel Bryan, the reigning World Heavyweight Champion) and Danielson is just one name on a list of victims.

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From the Apr '09 edition of Pro Wrestling Illustrated; Pearce bludgeons perhaps his greatest opponent, a bloody Brent Albright, in New York City.

Pearce brings the ring an old school high impact attack, standing 6’2, 245 pounds he will unleash a fury of moves including the Figure four leglock, Flying fist drop, and the Middle-rope elbow drop setting his opponents up for The Rack Bomb (Backbreaker rack dropped into a powerbomb) or the vicious Jumping piledriver to retain the title.

Quite honestly, after hours of studying tape of Pearce in action, you can see many of his opponents in fear of those finishers from the start of the match. 

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Pearce will have to beware of the crossface finisher from Wyatt. Many matches and titles have been won via this feared move in the Midwest for “The Belt Collector” Jeremy Wyatt(Photo Credit Brian Kelley)

One man who will not have fear in his eyes is the “The Belt Collector” Jeremy Wyatt.  Wyatt considered by many to be the best wrestler in the Midwest, has been dying for this opportunity to make a name for himself. He knows that opportunities likes these are very rare for wrestlers in the area. Quite possibly the most hated man in the Midwest, 3XWrestling fans have come to love him for his multiple matches of the year and giving a 110% during every match.

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Wyatt can strike from anywhere!!!(Photo Credit Brian Kelley)

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(Photo Credit Brian Kelley)

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Wyatt has many of the fans scattering for safety as he stalks Gage Octane. (Photo Credit Brian Kelley)

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Opponents have to be concerned about going to the mat as Wyatt is a student of the game and is scary to defend against. (Photo Credit Brian Kelley)

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(Photo Credit Brian Kelley)

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Devin Carter goes flying from a right hook from Wyatt….Where Wyatt lacks in size he makes up with the knowledge of when and where to deliver the blow.(Photo Credit Brian Kelley)

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Wyatt has successfully defended his NWA Central States championship against arch rival and NWA Kansas champ Tyler Cook. In less than two weeks he goes for the NWA WORLD TITLE!!!(Photo Credit Brian Kelley)

Wyatt most likely will be the first to tell you he is not doing this for the fans, yet he is the fans best chance to bring back the NWA Worlds title back home to the Midwest. 

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Adam Pearce has been the heart of the NWA since his first NWA World title reign September 1st, 2007 when he defeated Brent Albright in the finals of the vacated NWA tournament. Here Pearce is on set of NWA Wrestling Showcase talking 'rasslin' with David Marquez. (Photo credit Shane Kidder.)

Is Pearce making a mistake as he makes good on his promise to “GIVE BACK to a deserving industry that has given me 16+ years of experiences that I’ll cherish forever.”

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Onlu the kids are brave (naive)enough to talk back to the champ. (Photo Credit Brian Kelley)

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Pearce has been wise in the past to align himself with men who can assist him in keeping his beloved gold, here he celebrates with the then MPW Champion Derek Stone and Matt Murphy. (Photo Credit Brian Kelley)

Pearce, a fighting champion will be around the world in  Oberhausen, Germany defending the title a week prior to his return to the Midwest. Fans in Iowa can prepare for a double shot starting off with match against Wyatt at 3XW then heading to Council Bluffs, Iowa for Magnum Pro Wrestling to take on “ Babyface” Tony Cortez the very next night.

With one Lighting Spiral from Wyatt on January 27th at 3XWrestling, the NWA president Robert Trobich   and Magnum Pro may be scrambling late Friday night to come up with a plan to resign a rematch against the NEW NWA World Champion Jeremy Wyatt and Adam Pearce immediately. 

When it is all said and done, I want the NWA and Adam Pearce don’t say that Missouri Wrestling Revival didn’t try to warn you of “The Belt Collector”.

Great NWA world title moments in the Midwest.

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April 3, 1908-Frank Gotch defeats George Hackenschmidt to become the world champion in Chicago, Illinois.

April 19, 1917 Earl Caddock defeated Joe Stecher to become the world champion in Omaha, Nebraska.

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Earl Caddock was not only a world champion but also enlisted in the Army to serve our country. Fans be sure to pick up the new book from Mike Chapman called Caddock “Walnut’s Wrestling Wonder” on one of the best wrestlers to ever come from the Midwest. For more info on how to purchase the book click here.

 March 3,  1922  Ed “Strangler” Lewis defeated  Stanislaus Zbyszko to become the world champion in Wichita, Kansas.

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Here is a great photo of two of the most powerful, respected and important men in the history of wrestling, Sam Muchnick and Lou Thesz.

December 29, 1937 Lou Thesz defeats Everett Marshall in the first of his six NWA world titles in ST Louis, Missouri.

June 30, 1961 Buddy Rogers defeats Pat O’Connor to win his first NWA world title in Chicago Illinois.

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I love this photo of Harley Race. Arguably the greatest NWA World champion of all time.

May 24, 1973 Harley Race defeats Dory Funk Jr. to win first of 8 NWA world titles in Kansas City, Missouri.  Match named Pro Wrestling Illustrated match of the year.

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Ric Flair would capture his first NWA World title right here in the Midwest in what many called an upset at the time.

September 17, 1981 Ric Flair defeats Dusty Rhodes to win first of 9 NWA world titles in Kansas City, Missouri.

June 10, 1983 Harley Race defeats Ric Flair for the NWA world title to set up Starcade.  Match named Pro Wrestling Illustrated match of the year.

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February 20, 1989 Ricky Steamboat defeat Ric Flair to capture the NWA world title in Chicago, Illinois

January 27th 2012 Jeremy Wyatt ???? Adam Pearce Des Moines, Iowa

Information of the NWA world title courtesy of the 16th edition of the PWI Wrestling Almanac.

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Could Jeremy Wyatt be defending the NWA WORLD TITLE at these MWR Promotions after January 27th?

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MWR fans for a great source of the NWA check out the Alliance-Wrestling.com here.

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Midwest wrestling great Earl Caddock’s story now available from author Mike Chapman.

Posted by flairwhoooooo on January 5, 2012

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January 1, 2012

Editor’s note: It is quite fitting that during the time that we celebrate the wrestlers around the Midwest with the 2011 MWR Awards that we also announce the new book of a true Midwest wrestling legend.

Wrestling historian and the 2010 MWR Lifetime Achievement recipient Mike Chapman has just released his new book on the life and times of Earl Caddock, CADDOCK: Walnut’s Wrestling Wonder.

Please take the time to purchase yourself a copy of this book today!!

NEWTON, Iowa – A new book tells the story of the life and athletic career of Earl Caddock, one of the greatest wrestlers in American history who lived most of his life in Iowa and is buried in his adopted hometown of Walnut.

CADDOCK: Walnut’s Wrestling Wonder, was written by Mike Chapman, noted wrestling author and historian, and published by Culture House Books of Newton, in cooperation with the city of Walnut.

Earl Caddock came off an Iowa farm to become a great amateur wrestler and then won the world heavyweight championship of professional wrestling, back when the sports was a true athletic contest. He was an AAU national champion, in 1914 and 1915, but the cancellation of the 1916 Olympics ended his amateur career.

With Frank Gotch of Humboldt, Iowa, acknowledged as the top athlete in America at the time, Caddock decided to follow Gotch into professional wrestling. On April 9, 1917, he took a perfect record of 79-0 (53-0 as an amateur and 26-0 as a pro) into the ring in Omaha to take on the world champion, Joe Stecher. After more than two hours of grueling wrestling, Earl Caddock emerged as the heavyweight champion of the world.

In 1919 and 1920, Caddock was one of the nation’s most popular athletes, standing alongside such legendary figures as Babe Ruth, Jack Dempsey and Jim Thorpe.

At the peak of his sports career, Caddock enlisted in the U.S. Army to fight in World War I and served gallantly in France as a doughboy, suffering lung damage from gas attacks. He returned to make his home in Walnut, Iowa. After three more years of wrestling, Caddock retired from the ring and began a successful career as a businessman in both Walnut and in Omaha.

“Earl Caddock was a devoted husband, father, Christian and high-successful businessman, as well as patriot and champion athlete,” said Chapman, who has written a total of 23 books, 15 on wrestling. “His story is both heroic and inspirational.”

“As mayor of Walnut, I am delighted that a book has finally been written about our most famous citizen,” said Gene Larsen in the foreword. “Though his fame was immense in the late teens and early 1920s, it has faded through the decades and I feel it is time that Walnut does something to keep his memory alive for future generations.”

Caddock is a member of the Des Moines Register Sports Hall of Fame. Sec Taylor, legendary sports editor of the Register and a personal friend of Caddock, once compared Caddock’s fame in Iowa to that of Nile Kinnick.

By winning the world title, “overnight Caddock became the toast of the entire state, “ wrote Taylor at the item of Caddock’s death, in 1950. “Perhaps no other athlete, not even Frank Gotch, caught the fancy and the imagination of the public as did Caddock, until the late Nile Kinnick, Iowa football player, came along.”

Nat Fleischer, considered the top boxing and wrestling writer of the first half of the 20th century, eulogized Caddock in his book, Milo to Londos: “He was an inspiration to the youth of America. During his entire career, he exemplified the best in American sports tradition. And when the history of wrestling is written…. I shall see that Earl Caddock’s name goes up near the top for his wrestling ability, and on top as the man who has done most for the uplift of wrestling in this country.”

The 88-page book includes 35 photos and newspaper articles, many not seen for 80 years, and Caddock’s complete professional record.

The cost is $7.95 plus $3 shipping and handling. It is available by ordering through Culture House, P.O. Box 293, Newton, IA 50208, or by calling 641-791-3072, or at the city hall in Walnut, Iowa.

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