Instigating the Irish
Those silly Irishmen and their fistfights. If anything is more synonymous with the Irish than Guinness, it’s a good ol’ street fight. From the scruffy Ginger mascot of Notre Dame, to stories of grandfathers lining up disrespectful mouths for left hooks – the Irish lineage is steeped in aggression. Perhaps it’s no wonder then that the Irish (along with their UK neighbors) have a long tradition of wrestling, of which the American collegiate style is a direct descendant.
From fields and barns in County Kilkenny the Irish tradition of Collar and Elbow wrestling was transported along with 1.2 million souls to the American shores in the mid 19th century. From there the sport grew and became popular in tough towns across the region, though most famously in Vermont. These “Magnificent Scufflers” gave rise to both professional and amateur style of the sport in America.
I’d love to break into a long list of anecdotes, but a nice young writer in Britain has already done the dirty work. His photos and the link to his story are below. Here’s my challenge to readers: Become a contributor. I’ll be looking for men and women with libraries of information and access to original photos and videos. Share your knowledge and I promise nobody will get hurt.
Read the full entry here