First of all, if you are interested the history of "The Blimp" Martin Levy, you must read an
article by a friend of this website, entitled "Big Man: The Coney Island Attraction who
Made Wrestling History" by Eddy Portnoy.  It can be found at the following link:
Martin Levy Article by Eddy Portnoy

Martin Levy was a major figure in professional wrestling history, known for his gigantic
size - basically becoming the sport's largest athlete and eclipsing the previous record
holder Man Mountain Dean.  Initially, Levy weighed more than 520 pounds, but at his
height, he was well over 640 - and reports find that he was up to as much as 900 when
he passed away.  When he made his professional debut in November 1933 in Boston, he
was publicized as "Martin Levi," but "Levy" is the accurate way to spell his last name.  He
won his early matches in quick fashion, toppling his foes with simple movements -
demonstrating to the fans that his incredible size was going to prove supreme to actual
wrestling knowledge.

Boston, Massachusetts:  November 17, 1933
(Boston Garden) … Gus Sonnenberg b. Casey Kazanjian (2/3) … Leo Numa b. Mike
Romano (26:05) … Martin Levi b. Axel Anderson (40 seconds) … Bibber McCoy and Earl
McCready drew (15:00) … Elmer Holzeworth and Buck Weaver drew (5:00) … Jack Riley
and Sandor Szabo drew (15:00) … Joe Malcewicz and Charles Strack drew (20:00) …
Joe Savoldi b. Buck Weaver (9:35) … (promoter:  Paul Bowser) … (referee:  Sam Smith)
… (6,000 fans)
Notes:  The Boston Globe stated that “All Levi had to do was to hit Anderson and the
bout was over,” and that “Levi is far from being the world’s best grappler, but there’s no
one challenging his claim to being the world’s biggest.” Riley was a right tackle for the
Boston Redskins and he subbed for “Yvonne Roberts,” who is likely future legend Yvon
Robert.  The Boston Globe (11/13/1933) stated that this show was going to mark the
“mat debut of the 525-pound Martin Levi, who will meet Axel Anderson of Sweden.  The
beefiest matman to appear previously was the be-whiskered Man Mountain Dean, but in
Levi, Bowser claims he has the heftiest of all.” The Boston Globe (11/17/1933) stated
that Sonnenberg has fully recovered from a ring injury and a heart ailment which laid him
low for almost a month during the summer.  This was his return to Boston.  Also that
“Martin Levi, the 525-pound piece from Quincy, will make his first mat showing against
Axel Anderson in one of the preliminaries.” The Boston Globe (11/10/1933) stated that
Levi, the 525-pounder from Quincy, was making his “mat debut at the Garden.”

Boston, Massachusetts:  November 30, 1933
(Boston Garden) … Ed Don George b. Leo Numa (2-0) (52:00, 1:30) … Joe Savoldi and
Gus Sonnenberg drew (30:00) … Axel Anderson b. Earl Tompkins (3:39) … Martin Levi
b. Jack Costa (50 seconds) … Elmer Holzeworth b. Louis Allaire (6:49) … Hank Barber
and Mike Romano drew (10:00) … Ernie Dusek b. Ernie Gestewicz (10:45) … Casey
Kazanjian and Charles Strack drew (15:00) … Earl McCready b. Eli Fisher (11:45) …
Count Zarynoff b. Dick Raines (11:25) … (promoter:  Paul Bowser) … (referee:  Ted
Tonneman) … (nearly 10,000 fans)
Notes:  The newspaper indicated that the Savoldi-Sonnenberg bout had “a few dull
moments during the match and if they gave decisions in wrestling, Sonnenberg would
have received the verdict.” Also Tonneman was “an apparent stranger in these parts, for
nobody booed the announcement” of him refereeing the main event.  He was from
Chicago.  Tonneman’s trousers were strange “white flannels with a bright stripe down
each side,” and he wore a bright green boe tie.  “Ernie” Gestewicz is likely “Al” Gestewicz
(Getz).  The next show was December 15.

A photo of Martin Levy appeared in the January 16, 1937 issue of the St. Louis Post
Dispatch.  It stated that Levy weighed 625 pounds and he claimed to have "never been

Research by Tim Hornbaker
"The Blimp" Martin Levy Wrestling History
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