September 23 Illinois History Minute
It’s September 23rd. And more than a hundred-thousand people filled Chicago’s Soldier Field on this day in 1927 to watch the rematch between heavyweight boxers Jack Dempsey and Gene Tunney. This was the fabled “long count” fight, in which Dempsey’s delay in staying in a neutral corner gave Tunney five extra seconds to recover from a knockdown. Tunney went on to win the bout, ending Dempsey’s prizefighting career.
Also this week in 1999, WILL celebrated its new home on the University of Illinois campus. A dedication ceremony was held for Campbell Hall for Public Telecommunication, where WILL’s radio and TV operations had moved in a few months earlier --- and also for the adjacent Richmond Teaching Studio and Swanson Center, providing hands-on training for U of I media students.