Who’s Who of Wrestling Website

Thursday, May 14th, 2015 | Wrestling | No Comments

Coming June 1, 2015, the Who’s Who of Wrestling (http://www.whoswhoofwrestling.com) invites YOU to visit and enter YOUR biography along with other wrestlers, coaches and fans!

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Upcoming Events for Mike for 2015

Thursday, May 14th, 2015 | Book Signing, Books, Movie Scripts, Speaking, Wrestling | No Comments

May 18 – As the author of 27 books, Mike will be speaking to a creative writing class at West Waterloo High School, talking to young students about the joy of writing and how to get started as a writer. He will also discuss his latest adventures in Hollywood, with two movie projects under way. Mike has talked to these West Waterloo writing classes five times in recent years for Donna Huff, teacher extraordinaire (and wife of wrestling coaching legend Don Huff) and enjoys it very much.

June 1 – The brand new and exciting website WHO’s WHO of WRESTLING will debut on this date. Created by Mike and Bev Chapman and Mike Reese, the web site will be the largest and most comprehensive website for wrestling history and wrestling biographies ever developed.

June 27-30 – One of the biggest wrestling events of the summer is set for June 27-July 2 in Orlando, Florida, where the Scholastic Duals Wrestling Tournament will be held at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. Over 1,600 wresters are expected to compete. The AAU Wrestling Hall of Fame banquet will be held on June 29, and Mike will be the featured speaker at the banquet. Mike was inducted into the AAU hall of fame in 2005 but this is the first year he has been able to attend the event. Mike and Bev will have several tables of wrestling items for display and for sale during the wrestling tournament, and they invite you to stop by and learn more about their exciting new project, Who’s Who of Wrestling website.

July 11 – Mike and Bev will be the guests at the 2015 Midwest National Wrestling Tournament in Bloomington, Illinois. The event will be held at the Shirk Center on Illinois Wesleyan University campus, with over 1,000 wrestlers expected to compete. Mike and Bev will have several tables of memorable items for display and books, posters and card for sale. Plan to stop by and visit them and earn more about the news and exciting Who’s Who of Wrestling website.

Sept. 15 – On this date, Mike will be the featured speaker at the “Golden Opportunities” program for senior adults at the First Baptist Church in Marshalltown, beginning at 11 a.m. He will talk about his books “Triumph and Tragedy” and “Lowell Park”, as well as his overall writing career.

Mike on No Holds Barred: Nat Pendleton, Catch and College Wrestling Star

Wednesday, March 18th, 2015 | Books, Radio, Wrestling | No Comments

Mike was a guest on No Holds Barred, hosted by Eddie Goldman, discussing his recently completed book on undefeated college wrestler, 1920 Olympic silver medalist wrestler, pro catch wrestler and shooter, and Hollywood actor Nat Pendleton

The conversation covered Pendleton wrestling for Columbia (which had the first college wrestling program in the country), where he never lost a match; his national tournament titles; his Olympic silver medal; and his days as in the pro wrestling world.

The conversation also covered a legendary pro catch wrestling match which Nat Pendleton had in 1923 with the great John Pesek, which is one of the last real, or shoot, matches in pro wrestling. Held in Boston with heavy newspaper coverage, Pesek was able to defeat Pendleton by submission in two straight falls.

Finally, there was discussion on the legacy of Nat Pendleton for college wrestling and his alma mater, Columbia; the lessons of the devolution of catch wrestling last century into a staged spectacle; what the re-emerging catch wrestling movement of today has to learn about good governance of the sport and the battle against corruption from the tragedy of the real sport’s demise in the past; and much more.

You can listen to the podcast here:

Source: Podomatic

Listen to more No Holds Barred on Podomatic or iTunes.

Illinois Hall of Fame honors Mike in April

Tuesday, February 10th, 2015 | Awards, Wrestling | No Comments

The Illinois Wriwcoaestling Coaches and Officials Association has announced that Mike Chapman will be among those inducted into its Hall of Fame on April 18. The hall of fame is in its 45th year of recognizing outstanding individuals who have impacted wrestling in the state of Illinois.

Though born and raised in Iowa, Mike worked on three different newspapers in Illinois, for a total of nearly 15 years. His last job in Illinois was as executive editor of Sauk Valley Newspapers in Dixon, from 1988 to 1998. While there, he created WIN magazine, the nation’s top wrestling publication; the WIN Memorabilia Show, held each year during the NCAA Division I tournament with crowds of 10,000 or more, and the Dan Hodge Trophy given each year to the nation’s top collegiate wrestler.

“This was a wonderful surprise,” said Mike, when notified of his selection. “I have great admiration for the wresting heritage of Illinois and I am delighted to be a part of it, however small.”

Continue reading…

Mike writes biography of wrestler-actor Nat Pendleton

Tuesday, January 13th, 2015 | Books | No Comments

frontcover 1The amazing career of Nat Pendleton is the subject of an exciting new book by Mike, generally recognized as one of the nation’s leading wrestling historians and authors. Pendleton is one of the most important figures in early American wrestling history. Born in Iowa in 1895, he was an undefeated college star at Columbia University in New York City, a two-time AAU national champion, and silver medal winner in the 1920 Olympics.

Nat turned to pro wrestling during its transitional period from athletic contest to show business and participated in one of the most talked-about matches in pro wrestling history. His opponent in that 1923 match was the feared submission expert, John Pesek, and the outcome has been the subject of considerable discussion for nearly nine decades.

Shortly after the match, Nat moved to Hollywood and appeared in nearly 100 movies – one of the most successful athletes to ever appear in films!

backcover 1The book has 60 photos, some never published before. The foreword was written by Andy Barth, who was a Colombia University wrestling team captain many decades after Nat Pendleton held the same position. Andy is a member of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame and one of wrestling’s top supporters. Here is part of what Andy wrote: “I want to thank Mike Chapman for working so diligently to research and write this biography. This is a great read that touches at the core of what the sport of wrestling can do for young men and women to strengthen and develop their character in the areas of determination, perseverance and a will to succeed. I am proud to have walked the same halls and shared in the same heritage as Nat Pendleton.”

You can add this book to your wrestling library for just $14.95, and $5 for shipping and handling. Send a check or money order for $19.95 to — Culture House, P.O. Box 293, Newton, Iowa, 50208, or call 641-791-3072 for more information.

Speaking in Forest City

Monday, August 18th, 2014 | Speaking | No Comments

800px-Bob_Baker_singing_cowboyAUGUST 26 — The Winnebago Historical Society will celebrate Forest City’s own Bob Baker on Tuesday, August 26, with Iowa History Journal’s Mike Chapman, who will speak at several venues in town.

Chapman will speak at the Forest City Rotary Club at noon in Salveson Hall’s ballroom (106 S. Sixth St.) at Waldorf College. He will be at the Mansion Museum (336 N. Clark St.) from 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. He will speak at Forest Plaza Assisted Living (635 Highway 9, E.) at 3 p.m. He will introduce and play one of Bob Baker’s films in the community room at Titonka Savings Bank (101 Highway 69, N.), starting at 7 p.m. Free admission with popcorn and refreshments.

Bob Baker, a singing cowboy in movies in the late 1930s, was born Stanley Leland Weed on Nov. 8, 1910, in Forest City. He was selected to star as a singing cowboy for Universal Studios in 1937, beating out several young men for the position – including Leonard Slye, who went on to become famous as Roy Rogers. Stanley’s parents were Guy and Ethel (Leland) Weed. He served in the U.S. Army, was a police officer in Arizona and ran a dude ranch. He died Aug. 29, 1975.

Mike Chapman is founder of Iowa History Journal, a magazine devoted to the preservation of history in Iowa. He retired from a 35-year newspaper career in 2002. He served as publisher of the Newton Daily News, as well as sports editor of the Cedar Rapids Gazette and executive editor of the Sauk Valley Newspapers in Dixon, Illinois. He has written 26 books, and his articles have appeared in dozens of national and regional magazines. One of his novels, Lowell Park (about Ronald Reagan as a lifeguard in Lowell Park in the summer of 1932), has been purchased by a major movie company and is in preproduction.

The Winnebago Historical Society is housed in the 1899 Mansion Museum at 336 N. Clark St., in Forest City, and it oversees Heritage Park, a 91-acre park on the south edge of Forest City. Its mission is to educate children and adults through the Mansion Museum, reintroduce families to their past through the Leibrand-Whiteis Historical Center, and recreate the lives and livelihoods of our ancestors at Heritage Park of North Iowa.

For more information, contact Becky Gjendem at info@winnebgohistoricalsocietyiowa.org or 641-590-5194.

Iowa History Journal at the Iowa State Fair

Monday, August 18th, 2014 | Book Signing, Books, Iowa History Journal | No Comments

photoMike was a special guest at the Iowa History Journal booth at the Iowa State Fair last week. He signed dozens of books for fairgoers and hung out with Michael and Rebecca Swanger, the new owners of Iowa History Journal. Bev also worked at the Fair two days.

Catch Wrestling Alliance International Invitational: The Rebirth

Wednesday, March 12th, 2014 | Wrestling | No Comments

June 7 – Mike will be a special guest and exhibitor at a “catch” wrestling tournament held on the UCLA campus in Los Angeles. The event is being run by “catch” expert Raul Ramirez and is called the “Catch Wrestling Alliance International Invitational: The Rebirth.” It will feature top competitors in the “catch” style from England and America, “Catch’ was the wrestling style popular in the early 1900s and a win can be claimed only by a submission or pin as there are no points awarded. Bouts 20 minutes. This event will be held Saturday, June 7, in Collins Court in the John Wooden Center on the campus of UCLA, at 221 Westwood Plaza, Los Angeles, California 90095-1612. More information is available at www.catchwrestlingalliance.com

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Upcoming Speeches and Appearances

  • June 1, 2015 – Debut of Who's Who of Wrestling Website
  • June 27, 2015 – Scholastic Duals Wrestling Tournament
  • July 11, 2015 – Midwest National Wrestling Tournament
  • September 15, 2015 – “Golden Opportunities” Program in Marshalltown

Calendar of Appearances

August 2015
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Who’s Who of Wrestling

Coming June 1, 2015!

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Oklahoma Shooter – Back by Popular Demand

Oklahoma Shooter: The Dan Hodge Story is $22 plus $5 for shipping and handling. You can order by sending a check or money order for $27.00 to Culture House, P.O.. Box 293, Newton, IA 50208, or by calling 641-791-3072.

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