Chicago Tribune – January 6, 1929
MARQUETTE, Mich., Jan. 5 – (Special) – A farmer boy from “the sticks” of the northern peninsula of Michigan today wears the world’s heavyweight championship wrestling belt and the “old home town” is right proud. The champion is Gustav Sonnenberg, who took the title from Strangler Lewis at Boston, Mass., last night, and the “old home town” is Marquette.
In days gone by, Gus lived on a farm at Green Garden, near here, but obtained his high school education and normal school training in Marquette, and it was here that he started in athletics.
Coming in from the farm a stocky boy, he went out for football his freshman year and made the first team as a guard. He was seen again the next year, but during his last two years he played tackle, did the punting and some plunging, being pulled out of the line on the old Minnesota shift play. He also played basketball for three years in high school.
The first year spent in the Northern State Teacher college here saw him at fullback for one season. Later he coached the Escanaba High School team and finally went east to become, as the east prefers to call him, “the former Dartmouth star.”