Friday, May 03, 2024

Walking With Ghosts

Origins of the National Wrestling Alliance
The building, the match, the belt.


Hotel President in Waterloo, Iowa (2022)


PART ONE: Walking with Ghosts: A Visit to the Birthplace of the NWA
The Hotel President in Waterloo, Iowa, hosted a group of regional wrestling promoters as they got together to form the National Wrestling Alliance in 1948. That building still stands and bears that name. Take a look inside and see where this famous meeting took place and who was there.


PART TWO: Waterloo: The First Ever NWA World Heavyweight Title Defense
Orville Brown defeats Joe Dusek in a match held hours after the National Wrestling Alliance is chartered in Waterloo, IA. Brown had been selected by the NWA's founding fathers in 1948 as the the organization's first champion, making the match the unofficial first defense of the NWA Championship. The NWA dignitaries were in attendance. See all the details.


PART THREE: Orville Brown and the First NWA Title Belt (1948)
On the night of the first unofficial NWA title defense, Midwest Wrestling Association champion Orville Brown successfully defended the title wearing the MWA belt to the ring. That very belt would later be modified to represent the new NWA organization's championship. See photos of the belt before and after, plus the rest of the story.