There exist two typescripts for this story. The first corresponds to the final version submitted to Fight Stories and Argosy. It is written in the third person and the ghostly elements are less marked. Ghost Stories bought this story for $95 and published it under the title ‘The Apparition in the Prize Ring’ and the name John Taverel.
The second typescript is written in the first person and the supernatural element is more pronounced.
Thomas Molineaux (23 March 1784 – 4 August 1818), sometimes spelled Molyneaux or Molyneux, was an American bare-knuckle boxer and possibly a former slave. He spent much of his career in Great Britain and Ireland, where he had some notable successes. He arrived in England in 1809 and started his fighting career there in 1810. His two fights against Tom Cribb, widely viewed as the Champion of England, brought Molineaux fame even though he lost both contests. The result of the first encounter was hotly contested, with accusations of a fix. The second, losing contest with Cribb, however, was undisputed. His prizefighting career ended in 1815. After a tour that took him to Scotland and Ireland, he died in Galway, Ireland in 1818, aged 34. (information from Wikipedia)
From a letter to Tevis Clyde Smith:
From a letter written to his friend, Tevis Clyde Smith cirka November 1928 we learn that Howard told him that he sold the story to Ghost Story Magazine:
At last I’ve sold a story to Ghost Story Magazine;1 they said I ought to get the check soon. I hope so. I need mazuma as usual. How are you coming with your literary work?
At the end of the letter Howard said:
I got $95.00 for the manuscript I sold to Ghost Story Megazine.
You might answer soon.
- BOXING STORIES, Bison Books, April 2005 (version written in the third person)
- THE HORROR STORIES OF ROBERT E. HOWARD, Del Rey, October 2008 (version written in the first person)
- THE HORROR STORIES OF ROBERT E. HOWARD, Tantor Media, Inc., March 2010 (audio, version written in the first person)
- KROK ZE TMY, Albatros Media, 2010 (Czech)
- THE HORROR STORIES OF ROBERT E. HOWARD, Subterranean Press, March 2011 (version written in the first person)
- THE COLLECTED BOXING FICTION OF ROBERT E. HOWARD: FISTS OF IRON, REH Foundation Press, June 2013 (both versions)
- DIE UNTER DEN GRÄBERN HAUSEN, Festa Verlag, August 2014 (German)
- I FIGLI DELLA NOTTE. RACCONTI DELL’ORRORE VOLUME 1, Arnoldo Mondadori Editore, March 2015 (Italian)