Thursday, September 28, 2006

Censorship scores a KO

A film showing the July 21, 1927, fight between Jack Dempsey and Jack Sharkey had been showing for two days at the Best Theatre, 212 Main, when it was ordered deleted by the Houston censor board.

Mrs. T.H. Eggart of the censor board said she thought the film showed some parts of the bout. When she learned the film showed the entire seven-round fight, she demanded the film be removed from exhibition.

Paul Barraco, the theater’s manager, told the Houston Chronicle for its Sept. 28, 1927, edition that Eggart was told the film was a “clean fight picture.”

At the time, it was against state law to show films of prize fights. The Sims Act of July 31, 1912, also made it a federal offense to transport boxing films from one state to another.

By the way, Dempsey knocked out Sharkey in the seventh round.

This wasn’t the first time Houston’s censor board judged what Houstonians should and should not see.



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