Frank Gotch


Title History

  • American Championship defeating Tom Jenkins (1903)
  • World Championship defeating George Hackenschmidt (1908)

Career History

Frank Gotch:

  • April 2, 1899: Frank Gotch (debut) defeated Marshall Green in Humboldt, Iowa..
  • Frank Gotch wrestled in the rough and tumble mining camps of Alaska..
  • Frank Gotch was well known for his victories over George Hackenschmidt and by his famous toehold finisher..
  • February 22, 1903: Frank Gotch challenged Tom Jenkins for the American Championship but was unsuccessful..
  • 1904: Frank Gotch defeated Tom Jenkins for American Championship and held the title for over eight years..
  • April 3, 1908: Frank Gotch defeated “The Russian Lion” George Hackenschmidt for the World free-style Heavywieght title..
  • ~~~Following the bout, George Hackenschmidt accused Frank Gotch of using unfair tactics to win the championship..
  • September 4, 1911: Frank Gotch defeated an injured Hackenschmidt at Comisky Park in Chicago in the much anticipated (re)match..
  • Frank Gotch was acknowledged as one of the first NWA World Champions..
  • November 15, 1911: Frank Gotch defended the World Heavyweight title against Jim Aspdell in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan..
  • April 1, 1913: Frank Gotch announced his retirement from wrestling..
  • July 18, 1916: Frank Gotch fractured his leg in an exhibition match with Bob Managoff Sr. at a Sells-Floto Circus performance..
  • ~~~This was the last time he wrestled..
  • December 16, 1917: Frank Gotch died tragically at the age of 39..
  • Frank Gotch is buried at Union Cemetery in Humboldt, Iowa, in the large family tomb..

The Frank Gotch Legend:

  • April 24, 1999: Frank Gotch was inducted into the Tragos-Thesz Hall of Fame..
  • Frank Gotch’s memoralibia was about to be thrown out by one of the masonic lodges housing..
  • ~~~It was saved by a collector who put it in a wrestling museum in Iowa – where it belongs..
  • Frank Gotch and his life are accounted for in the book, “Wild West Characters”, covering his carnival tours in the west, [Website]
  • Frank Gotch is also mentioned at great length in the book, The Fall Guys, long out of print and an early days expose of the business..
  • Frank Gotch is also profiled in a biography written by Mike Chapman called Frank Gotch: An American Hero..
  • Frank Gotch had a short lived cigar brand named after him..