The Champion's Belt of Isaac Reid, heavyweight prize-fighter, Karen Eaton
The National Gallery of Australia holds a three-piece silver buckle that originally formed the central element of a Champion’s Boxing Belt presented to prize-fighter Isaac Reid in 1847 (plate 1). This remarkable belt was made by Sydney silversmiths J.J. Cohen & Son1 and engraved by John Carmichael. Until recently significant details relating to the origins and history of the belt had remained obscure. What words were engraved on the main plate when it was first presented? Was there a complete description of the original belt? What became of it after the champion’s untimely death only months after his triumph? How did the belt come into the possession of boxer Larry Foley in 1886?