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Chief Chewacki

Real NameGeorge Mitchell

Lifespan - n/a

??? - Oklahoma

Athletic Background - Boxing?

Teacher(s) - n/a

AliasesChief Georgie Shewchka, Chief Schewke, Chief Chewchki, Bearclaws Chewacki, King Chewacki, Prince Chewacki

Peak Years1930s

Place in HistoryThere has never been a pro-wrestler quite like Chief Chewacki.  Billed as the offspring of a Cherokee and a European gypsy, he was a wildman whose use of weapons led to suspensions and riots.  His background is somewhat mysterious, although it is believed he was from Oklahoma and started working in Texas in the early 1930s.  In many circles, American Indians were seen as non-Christian savages and the Romany as inbred thieves and swindlers and Chewacki was able to concentrate these negative stereotypes into a singular vilified character.  Chewacki’s legend was bolstered even more by the false claim that he was Gipsy Daniels, a 1920s boxer known for knocking out future heavyweight champion Max Schmeling.  The Chief Chewacki character was such that he traveled extensively throughout the United States and never held titles or worked lengthy feuds.  Barnstorming pro-wrestlers depended heavily on the press to build them up and Chewacki excelled at communicating his twisted philosophies in newspaper features.  He also staged publicity stunts were he tented out on courthouse lawns to “take back the land,” which led to his arrest and more local buzz.  Chewacki worked with his share of top names like Orville Brown, Danno O’Mahoney and Jim Londos, but it was working gimmick men that best suited his violent style.  There are newspaper records of him using everything from ether-soaked rags and coat-hangers to sandpaper and pepper.  Any outrageous tool that could gain him an advantage was employed and he was hated as a result.  The unpredictable violence perpetuated by a sinister “other” with some foreign moral code was a model that men like the Sheik, Bull Curry and Abdullah the Butcher with great success in the years to come.  While the negative stereotype of gypsies persisted, only a few adopted the identity after Chewacki.  The future Bull Montana used the the gimmick, name and all, in the Northeast in the 1960s.