Ross And Whistler

Daily Alta California – June 4, 1885

The Scotch Champion Vanquishes the Local Athlete.

The wrestling match between Duncan C. Ross and Clarence Whistler attracted a very fair-sized audience last night at the Wigwam.  The conditions of the match were that the contestants should wrestle four styles — Graeco-Roman, catch-as-catch-can, collar-and-elbow and side-hold, the winner of the best three falls in five to take the purse of $400.  Should neither win three falls in the first four, the final style to be selected by a toss.  D. R. McNeil acted as master of ceremonies and Adon Butler was selected referee and timekeeper.  At 9 o’clock Ross and Whistler entered the ring, both appearing in splendid order and condition.  Ross won the toss for the selection of the first style and chose collar-and-elbow.  The bout opened with cautious work on the part of both wrestlers.  Whistler labored at some disadvantage in this style, as Ross, by reason of the superior length of his legs, had the best of the tripping.  After ten minutes of tugging and hauling, in which each contestant went to the floor several times, the fall was suddenly declared in favor of Ross, although as usual the audience disputed the referee.


After a rest of fifteen minutes, Whistler selected Graeco-Roman for the second bout.  Whistler forced the work throughout the bout, Ross finding it necessary to resort to every manner of defensive tactics.  Finally, after nine minutes’ work, most of which was on the ground, Whistler won the fall, having succeeded in forcing Ross’ shoulders to the floor as that athlete endeavored to regain his feet from a bridge.


Was side holds.  This was well contested, and from beginning to end was a nip-and-tuck struggle.  For nineteen minutes neither wrestler could have claimed much advantage, although Whistler went down seven or eight times.  The audience constantly claimed falls when there were palpably none, and it was evident that all the sympathy was with Whistler.  Ross, however, finally succeeded in throwing Whistler fair and square on his back, so that no possible doubt could be entertained as to the fall.


Was a catch-as-catch-can, and the grim, earnest work on the part of Whistler aroused the audience to the highest pitch of excitement.  Whistler forced all the work, and time and again placed Ross in situations of great jeopardy.  Ross was entirely on the defensive throughout this bout.  One trick resorted to by Whistler occasioned vast amusement and excitement for the spectators.  Whistler, with a quick and unexpected spring, landed on Ross’ back, and secured a lock on his neck with his feet, and amid the yells of the audience nearly won a fall.  Ross, however, squirmed out of the position.  Finally Whistler secured a grip on Ross’ wrists and literally twisted his shoulders on to the ground.  Time, twenty minutes.  As the result of this bout was in favor of Whistler, it gave each man two falls, and the style of the final bout was left to a toss.  Ross won the toss and chose collar-and-elbow.


The men went to work with caution, and each was evidently fully determined to win the bout and match.  Whistler, however, soon began to force the work, and Ross remained on the defensive for ten minutes, when, with a quick jerk and toss, he landed Whistler fairly on the floor, and the referee awarded him the fall and match.  Judging from comments made by the spectators, Whistler, although he lost the match, did so in a manner which reflects great credit on him.  Many were disappointed that Ross contented himself so often with purely defensive tactics and allowed Whistler to do nearly all the work, but it was evident that Ross had all he could do to take care of himself without seeking any additional work.

During the match Jack Carkeek challenged Ross to wrestle in the three following styles for a purse of $250 or $500:  Cornish, collar-and-elbow and side holds, the match to take place in public or private.  It was also announced that Jack Keenan and Young Mitchell would fight with gloves, to a finish, on the 15th inst.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s