June 22, 1938: Joe Louis avenges his only professional loss to date by knocking out Max Schmeling in the first round at Yankee Stadium.

The match transcended boxing because although Schmeling was not a Nazi, German propaganda touted him to be a symbol of Aryan supremacy. His victory against Louis, a 12th-round knockout in 1936, was a big part of building Schmeling's persona.

But Louis' resounding win in the rematch elevated his status beyond that of just a sports star.

For more about the life of Joe Louis, check out this excerpt from Ira Berkow's boxing collection.

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