First Person Plural | The Native Boxing Gyms of 1970s Minneapolis

First Person Plural | The Native Boxing Gyms of 1970s Minneapolis

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In Minneapolis, Native American youth boxing reached its peak during the 1970s. Experienced boxers committed their time and energy to start gyms and coach the youth. In the turmoil of the urban environment, boxing was a way for Native American boys like Lee Goodman Sr. to step into the ring, stay out of trouble and gain self confidence.

In my experience in the Native youth boxing when I was a kid was not mainly what I gained from winning or losing,” says Goodman Sr. “It’s what I gained from it being a positive influence in my life being that young. And it was like that with a lot of us young Native boys. You know it gave us that self worth.”

Listen to our story by KFAI’s Dixie Treichel.

Banner photo: The 1975 National All-Indian Boxing Team; Soundcloud Photo: Ricky Littlewolf, 1971.

First Person Plural on KFAI is supported by Migizi Communications. This work is funded in part by the Minnesota Humanities Center with money from the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund that was created with the vote of the people of Minnesota on November 4, 2008.