A Brutal Wrestling Match

The New York Times – February 24, 1880

Between Edwin Bibby And Samuel Perry.

Bibby Wins Two Successive Falls.

Edwin Bibby, the celebrated English wrestler, who defeated Andre Christol in three contests, both in this City and Boston, wrestled with Samuel Perry, and English athlete, who arrived in this country two weeks ago, in a private room over O’Connor’s Billiard Hall, in Union-square, yesterday afternoon, for a purse of $300.  The match was the best two out of three falls, Devonshire style, catch as catch can, the English rules being strictly enforced.  The Devonshire style of wrestling is the most exhausting of any, kicking being allowed, and every class of hold permitted except by the neck.  The admission tickets to the match yesterday were limited to 150, and the spectators were chiefly composed of Wall-street brokers and downtown merchants.  When the men were stripped for the encounter, it was seen that Perry, though heavier than Bibby, was not in such fine condition, and Bibby became the favorite in the betting at odds of one hundred against seventy-five, which was soon increased to one hundred against fifty.  Mr. J. Develin acted as umpire for Perry, and Mr. S. Crum for Bibby.  William Muldoon was chosen referee.  After some fencing the men clinched, and for 22 minutes a struggle of the greatest fierceness followed.  Bibby forced the wrestling from the beginning, and clung to Perry with the bull-dog tenacity which astonished the sporting men who witnessed his first match with Christol.  Finally he secured a grape-vine lock on Perry and threw the latter heavily, securing first fall.  Both men were much exhausted, Perry being in the worst condition.  A rest of 25 minutes was allowed after which the contest was resumed.  The second bout, which was marked by the same earnestness as the first, lasted 25 minutes, when Bibby cross-buttocked Perry, falling on him heavily.  Blood started from Perry’s nose and mouth, and his friends carried him to a dressing-room.  The referee accordingly awarded Bibby the match and purse.

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