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Harold Johnson

Titles: Light heavyweight champion 1962-1963

Record: 76-11

Born: August 9, 1928 in Manayunk, Pennsylvania (USA)

Years active: 1946-1971

Nickname:  None 

Harold Johnson was a stand up boxer/puncher who carried knockout power in his right 
hand, as a ring technician he was at the top of the heap for his time. Johnson's 
father was also a boxer but rather than learn from his domineering father he ran 
away from home at the age of 15 and joined the navy. While in the navy he took up 
boxing and was said to have fought a exhibition bout with Billy Conn. The long 
career of Johnson carried him from 1946 to 1971 and he defeated the likes Archie 
Moore, Jimmy Bivins, Ezzard Charles and Nino Valdez in both the light heavy and
heavyweight divisions. When looking over his career it is astounding that Johnson 
was a champion or ranked contender for every year except one from 1951 until 1964. 
Johnson was so good that early in his career he only suffered two losses, those 
can be forgiven since they came against Archie Moore and Ezzard Charles! In fact 
Archie Moore was to become the eternal nemesis of Johnson and Johnson was only able 
to win 1 of their 5 fights. Johnson won his first 24 fights as a pro until he was 
defeated guessed it Archie Moore. If it had not been for the dominant 
Moore surely Johnson would have been reigned as a great light heavyweight champion
for much longer than he did. Another of the losses was a strange fight with Julio 
Medros that left Harold Johnson quitting in the second round complaining that he 
had been drugged. This fight many say is what caused Johnson to wait in vain for 
a title shot. Another loss in 1952 to Bob Satterfield was avenged in fine fashion 
when he knocked Satterfield out in two rounds. When he did get a title shot it was 
once again Archie Moore who stood in his way. In a classic fight Archie Moore was
knocked down in the 10th but wore down and took control of the late rounds (except 
the 10th) to stop Johnson in the 14th round with a flurry. The referee was forced 
to stop the fight when Johnson was stumbling after the knockdown. Johnson would 
remain a top contender for years to come. Johnson would win the title when Moore 
was stripped of his crown and was paired against Jesse Bowdry for the N.B.A light 
heavyweight championship. It was a one sided fight as Johnson learned from Moore 
and took to a early body attack which wore down Bowdry for a ninth round knockout. 
Universal recognition was given to Johnson when he defeated Doug Jones. Another 
defense of the title was against a forgettable challenger in Gustav Scholz in Berlin. 
Johnson was to make 4 defenses of his title in 2 years and it was a bit of a surprise 
when he lost even tough Johnson was aging. It took a last minute replacement fighter 
the slick boxing Willie Pastrano to take the title from Johnson. The light hitting 
Pastrano boxed circles around a Johnson who seemed to have aged overnight. Still 
Johnson fought on sporadically but never again challenged for any title. Over the 
next eight years Johnson boxed 9 times. In 1971 after being knocked out in the third 
round by a virtual unknown Herschel Jacobs and Johnson gave up on boxing at the age 
of 43.

Harold Johnson

Career Record: 76 W, 11 L (32 K.O's)


     -----   Joe Riley               Wilmington, VT          KO 2
     -----   Charley Lester          Wilmington, VT          KO 2
     -----   Jack Simon              Allentown, PA           KO 4
     Oct 25  Randy Ingram            Philadelphia            KO 4


     Jan 10  Frank Lowry             Philadelphia            KO 2
     Jan 24  Chappie Manning         Reading, PA             W 6
     Feb 10  Jimmy Holden            Allentown, PA           KO 4
     Feb 17  Joe Van Loan            Philadelphia            KO 2
     Mar 10  Tony Gillo              Philadelphia            W 6
     Apr 28  Leon Szymurski          Philadelphia            KO 3
     May 26  Fred Lester             Philadelphia            KO 8
     Jul 8   Tommy Ruth              Philadelphia            KO 6
     Aug 4   Al Pinel                Philadelphia            W 6
     Oct 6   Eddie Beazley           Philadelphia            KO 1
     Nov 6   Jimmy Moore             Atlantic City           KO 5
     Nov 24  Herbie Katz             Philadelphia            KO 1
     Dec 11  Kid Wolfe               Atlantic City           W 8


     Mar 1   Kenny Harris            Philadelphia            W 8
     Mar 29  Kenny Harris            Philadelphia            W 10
     May 13  Vernon Williams         Atlantic Ctiy           W 8
     Sep 28  Agustin Guedes          Philadelphia            KO 3
     Nov 9   Jimmy Holden            Allentown, PA           W 8
     Dec 14  Willie Brown            Philadelphia            KO 7


     Feb 23  Arturo Godoy            Philadelphia            W 10
     Apr 26  Archie Moore            Philadelphia            L 10
     Jun 18  Henry Hall              Milwaukee               W 10
     Jul 25  Henry Hall              Milwaukee               W 10
     Oct 26  Jimmy Bivins            Philadelphia            W 10
     Dec 7   Bert Lytell             Dayton, OH              W 10


     Feb 8   Jersey Joe Walcott      Philadelphia            KO by 3
     Dec 18  Harry Daniels           Philadelphia            KO 2


     Jan 22  Dusty Wilkerson         Philadelphia            KO 4
     Feb 9   Chuck Hunter            New York                W 8
     Jun 18  Elkins Brothers         Philadelphia            KO 10
     Jul 23  Chubby Wright           Philadelphia            W 10
     Sep 24  Archie Moore            Philadelphia            L 10
     Dec 10  Archie Moore            Milwaukee               W 10


     Jan 29  Archie Moore            Toledo, OH              L 10
     Mar 17  Clarence Henry          Philadelphia            W 10
     Aug 6   Bob Satterfield         Chicago                 L 10
     Sep 16  Leonard Morrow          Toledo, OH              KO 3
     Oct 6   Bob Satterfield         Philadelphia            KO 2
     Nov 24  Nino Valdes             New York                W 10


     Jan 16  Jimmy Slade             New York                W 10
     Mar 21  Bill Gilliam            Toledo, OH              W 10
     May 11  Toxie Hall              Miami                   W 10
     Sep 8   Ezzard Charles          Philadelphia            W 10
     Nov 7   Henry Hall              Milwaukee               W 10
     Nov 19  Chubby Wright           Hershey, PA             W 10


     Jan 29  Jimmy Slade             New York                W 10
     Feb 15  Charlie Williams        Miami                   KO 8
     Mar 17  Paul Andrews            Chicago                 W 10
     Aug 11  Archie Moore            New York                TKO by 14
             (For World Light Heavyweight Title)
     Oct 8   Billy Smith             Philadelphia            KO by 2
     Dec 7   Julio Mederos           Miami Beach             W 10
     Dec 22  Marty Marshall          Detroit                 W 10


     Feb 11  Paul Andrews            New York                KO 6
     May 6   Julio Mederos           Philadelphia            NC 2


     Dec 8   Bert Whitehurst         Porland, ME             W 10


     Mar 12  Bob Satterfield         Miami Beach             W 10
     May 31  Clarence Hinnant        New York                KO 1
     Sep 20  Wayne Bethea            Philadelphia            W 10
     Dec 17  Sid Peaks               Toledo, OH              KO 5


     Jan 17  Bert Whitehurst         Syracuse, NY            W 10
     Apr 15  Ollie Wilson            Hartford                KO 2
     Dec 3   Howard King             Chicago                 W 10
     Dec 15  Rudy Watkins            Chicago                 W 10


     Aug 4   Johnny Yorke            Pittsfield, PA          KO 6
     Nov 11  Sonny Ray               Chicago                 KO 10


     May 4   Clarence Floyd          Philadelphia            W 10


     Feb 7   Jesse Bowdry            Miami Beach             KO 9
             (Wins Vacant NBA Light Heavyweight Title)
     Apr 24  Von Clay                Philadelphia            KO 2
             (Retains NBA Light Heavyweight Title)
     Jul 1   Eddie Machen            Atlantic City           W 10
     Aug 29  Eddie Cotton            Seattle                 W 15
             (Retains NBA Light Heavyweight Title)


     May 12  Doug Jones              Philadelphia            W 15
             (Retains World Light Heavyweight Title)
     Jun 23  Gustav Scholz           Berlin                  W 15
             (Retains World Light Heavyweight Title)


     Mar 19  Tommy Merrill           Scranton, PA            KO 9
     Jun 1   Willie Pastrano         Las Vegas               L 15
             (Loses World Light Heavyweight Title)
     Dec 6   Henry Hank              Philadelphia            W 10


     Apr 20  Hank Casey              Santa Monica, CA        KO 8


     Jan 7   Johnny Persol           New York                L 10
     Dec 6   Pekka Kokkonen          Vienna                  W 10


     May 1   Herschel Jacobs         New Orleans             W 10
     Aug 7   Eddie Jones             New Orleans             W 10


     Feb 3   Lothar Stengel          Frankfurt               W 10
     Jun 11  Johnny Alford           Miami Beach             W 10

     Mar 30  Herschel Jacobs         New York                KO by 3