Larry Gains 1900 – 1983 HeavyWeight Champion

Larry Gains 1900 – 1983

Heavyweight Champion

Larry Gains was a prominent member of Leicester’s early Black community who lived and trained in the city during the 1930s.  Despite rising to become one of the top heavyweights of his era, and was twice Coloured Heavyweight Champion of the World, he was denied the opportunity to become World Champion due to the colour bar on Black boxers competing for the title.  Nevertheless, Gains pushed racial barriers through his attachment to Leicester and its people as well as his marriage to a white German woman during the interwar years.  Gains’ career and personal life reveal the racial discrimination in sport and society that concerned Britain’s Black migrant community in the early twentieth century.

This exhibition on Larry Gains features original boxing memorabilia from the 1930s that documents trials and achievements of his life.

The Larry Gains exhibition is part of a much larger initiative called Archiving the Past, Reflecting the Future, celebrating Black history in Britain all year round through uncovering the artistic and cultural contributions of the African and African Caribbean diaspora in Britain and particularly in the East Midlands.



Larry Gains 1900 - 1983 Champion Heavyweight Boxer

Larry Gains vs Don McCorkindale Official Programme (1933)

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Original photograph of Larry Gains vs Don McCorkindale at the Royal Albert Hall (1932)

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Promotional Photograph Signed by Larry Gains (1980)

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Churchman Boxing Personalities Cigarette Card: #17 Larry Gains (1938)

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