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The History of KRONK

The story of Detroit's own legendary boxing gym and the people who made it famous

Emanuel Steward was born in Bottom Creek, West Virginia. He was the first child of Manuel, a coal miner, and Catherine Steward. In the mountainous area where he was raised, Emanuel spent most of his free time engaging in rough and tough physical activities. His favorite pastimes included swimming, wrestling, playing cowboys, dodge ball, shooting marbles and fighting.

When he was eight years old, he received a pair of boxing gloves as a Christmas gift. At the time, no one would have ever imagined that these boxing gloves would begin a journey to fame, fortune and a historical legacy.

Emanuel became totally fascinated with this new game called boxing. He’d often sleep with his boxing gloves on his bed and would carry them everywhere he went. After beating up all of his friends, nobody wanted to play boxing with little Emanuel anymore. So he became creative and made makeshift punching bags by filling his pillowcases with newspapers and hanging them on tree limbs in his yard, where he’d punch at them until they burst. His parents would punish him for ruining their pillowcases; but little Emanuel’s desire for boxing continued to grow rapidly, much to his parents displeasure.

In hopes of quelling Emanuel’s thirst for boxing, it was decided that an illegal and unsanctioned boxing match would be held for him. Another mischievous boy from the neighboring town was recruited to fight Emanuel. The ‘opponent’ was a tough kid and was known as a bully around the town. It was expected that he would beat Emanuel and finally end his passion for boxing.....

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