Wrestling historian Mike Chapman speaks in Newton
When speaking about the sport to which he has dedicated much of his life, wrestling historian and best-selling author Mike Chapman is immensely energetic and captivating. The enthusiasm with which Chapman tells stories about himself and historical figures involving wrestling implies he could go on for days.
Chapman spoke at the Newton Public Library on Monday night to a group of mostly older enthusiasts of the sport he loves. Chapman spoke about the history of wrestling in Iowa. He offered his view on how Iowa, above all other states, became the heart of the wrestling world in America.
“Think about the people that had to cross the Mississippi River back in the 1800s. You had to be tough, and you had to be able to carry on through everything,” Chapman said. “These people put their whole family on a raft along with everything they own, their families and everything, and they had to cross that river themselves. And once they got across, Iowa was 70 percent forest. These are the people that built the state of Iowa, and when you think about wrestling, it’s not for everybody because of the amount of dedication it requires. That dedication is something that has always been a part of this great state.”
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