Armstrong is considered one of the greatest pound-for-pound boxers of all time.
The Ring Magazine Aug. 1938, reported that "Armstrong’s feat is unique in boxing", in winning the featherweight, welterweight and lightweight championships in a span of 10 months.
He had a streak of 27 knockouts, the longest streaks in the history of boxing, according to Ring magazine.
Armstrong defended the Welterweight Championship more times than any other fighter.
Once defended his welterweight title 5 times in 21 days in the month of October 1939.
Armstrong was a very popular fighter with the masses because of his exciting style of fighting. “I’d pack the house,” said Henry (Heller p 204), “people came to see me just come down the aisle. I’d come down the aisle like a bull out of a stall. I wasn’t doing this to show off. I did it to keep warm.”
Armstrong had an abnormally slow heartbeat and had to warm up in the dressing room with ten rounds of fast shadow boxing before going into the ring to fight a torrid 15 round battle. He tossed punches incessantly and they came from all angles. He fought so furiously it was impossible to count the blows he struck.” Upon his death it was discovered that Armstrong’s heart was a third larger than that of the average person. This allowed him to fight at a ferocious pace for 15 rounds without loss of breath. It seems certain that he could have done the same thing in a 20 round bout.
In 1938, Joe Louis and his managers invited Henry Armstrong and his entire training retinue to Pompton Lakes, New Jersey, to resume training. Joe generously agreed to cover all expenses. Henry tried to figure why, and came to the conclusion that Blackburn wanted Joe to absorb some of Henry’s aggressive, boring-in technique. Joe watched closely from a seat near the ring, and Henry as usual kept punching away, punching, punching. What happened in the second Schmeling fight soon became ring history; Joe was on top of the German, punching furiously from the first bell until the collapse of Schmeling after only two minutes and forty seconds of the first round. Henry was jubilant, he figured that maybe he had helped a little in that great victory of a Negro champion over the man Hitler sought to use as a symbol of the “master race.” (Gloves, Glory and God p 209 - 210)
Unknown to even his closest friends, he was also a writer of poetry. He wrote: Twenty Years of Poem, Moods, and Meditations (1954) and his autobiography, Gloves, Glory, and God (1956). Receive a downloaded copy of both book or individually in pdf format from the Henry Armstrong Foundation by making a minimum donation of $25.00 per book at www.henryarmstrong.org. Your donation is fully tax deductible and any support small or large will be greatly appreciated.