20 January 2010 – By Bernard O’Neill
Former Irish Amateur Boxing Association (IABA) President Breandan O Conaire has appealed to clubs throughout the country for help with an historical amateur boxing project.
The IABA, founded in 1911, celebrates its 100th birthday next year and every club, County Board and Provincial Council is being encouraged to organise its own special event(s) to mark this unique occasion. O’Conaire meantime, also wants clubs to help with charting the history of Ireland’s most successful Olympic sport and the history of Ireland’s forgotten boxers.
He said: “As Part of the Centenary celebrations the Association intends to compile an archive of historical information on boxing activity throughout the island from the earliest days of the Association, and before.
“In order to achieve this objective each Club, Co. Board and Provincial Council is hereby invited to make its own special contribution to this important and unique historical project. It is suggested that each unit select an individual or a small local committee whose function will be to collect all relevant information on boxing activity (events, personnel, sources, etc.) in their locality or region, from earliest times.
“Information can be sought from current and former club members, from local boxing families, local informants, schools, journalists etc., and from printed sources such as local histories, newspapers, poems or ballads, scrapbooks and photographs in possession of former boxers or their families, early boxing documents and memorabilia.
“Information regarding trophies, boxing programmers, annual reports and accounts of the IABA and Provincial Councils. Sources should be given for all information collected or supplied, and a preliminary list of the initial results of the collectors’ investigations should be forwarded to the undersigned by 31 December 2010.
“This preliminary list should also include: the title of the unit (e.g Clonmel Amateur Boxing Club; Antrim Co. Board, Munster Provincial Council); the founding year and short history of the unit; previous boxing clubs, in the locality; most famous local boxers; and a contact email or postal address and phone number.
“Those whose grandfathers, or great grandfathers, boxed in the early part of the last year may have scrapbooks and memorabilia and that would help tremendously. I would like to thank you in advance for your contribution and your assistance.”
Breandan O Conaire can be contacted at the National Stadium in Dublin (01) 454 3525.