1974 Jack Dempsey & Gene Tunney dual signed lithograph
This limited-edition print by artist Gustav Rehberger captures the excitement and adrenaline of the second meeting of these two boxing giants. After losing to upstart Gene Tunney in 1926, Jack Dempsey retired from the sport. However in just about a year later, the veteran decided he wanted to reclaim his title. The September 22, 1927 rematch soon became the athletic event of the Roaring 20’s. The sporting world had never seen anything like the build-up to the bout - Tunney was to receive an incomprehensible $990,000 for the fight and Al Capone famously offered to fix the fight in Dempsey’s favor (which he wisely refused). As if to live up to all the expectation, the fight will forever be mired in controversy for what became known as “The Long Count”. Dempsey knocked Tunney down in the 7th but had forgotten about the new rule that he had to go to a neutral corner before the referee could start a count. Dempsey had to be escorted to a corner, buying Tunney 5 seconds which he used to regain his bearings and get on his feet at the referees count of 9. Tunney recovered to out-box the older fighter and won after a unanimous decision by the judges. Originally available from Sports Illustrated in 1974, the lithograph has been signed by Dempsey and Tunney in graphite pencil. The 18” x 22” print is number 1312 of 1500 and is a dynamic tribute to one of boxing’s greatest fights. It has been double matted in black and red and affixed to a foam board backing, making it ready for framing. Total size is 21" x 25". VG-EX condition with a light horizontal crease across the middle of the print.