In 1935 Joe Louis knocked out Jewish boxer Max Baer in round 4, setting him up to fight Max Schmeling, the pride of Nazi Germany. Louis’ manager, Mike Jacobs (Jewish) set up the fight in Yankee Stadium to 45,000 fans. Jews supported Louis as one of their own and wanted him to refute the claims of the master race. They were dissappointed when Schmeling took Louis down in round 12. Hitler congratulated Schmeling for his patriotic achievement.
Schmeling earned the right to fight Braddock for the crown, but Braddocks’ Jewish manager did not want to give the German fighter a chance to take the crown to Germany. Louis’s manager, Jacobs, offered Braddock the unheard of sum of $ 500,000 (this was the 1930’s) to fight Louis instead. Louis beat Braddock, giving him another chance at Schmeling.
The second Louis Schmeling fight was billed as the match between fascism and democracy. The American Jewish Congress and the Non Partisan Anti Nazi League begged Jacobs to cancel the fight. Jacobs offered to donate 10% of the gate to a fund to help Jewish refugees.
In June 1938 Joe Louis knocked out Max Schmeling in the first round. Along with Jesse Owens’ victory in the Olympics, Joe Louis punctured the Nazi claim of racial superiority before it achieved its murderous final objective.
Schleming became a righteous gentile and harbored several Jews from arrest and deportation.
From the American Jewish Historical Society’s fall 2007″Heritage” Magazine.