Joseph “Toots” Mondt had a successful career in the 1920s, but could be remembered as the best for the co-promotion of the company that became WWE.
Mondt began his wrestling career in 1912 at the tender age of 18. Over the years, he climbed the charts and soon joined Ed “Strangler” Lewis, where he greatly expanded his skills, both inside and outside the ring.
Mondt continued to form the Gold Dust Trio with Lewis and Billy Sandow, a creative trio that the industry had never seen. The three advanced the stylistic qualities of the in-ring product, developing an exciting brand of competition that Mondt dubbed “Slam Bang Western Style Wrestling”. The trio also created the idea of real promotions with structure that could travel from city to city.
The impact of “Toots” on modern WWE cannot be underestimated, as he and Vince McMahon Sr. took control of the Capitol Wrestling Corporation and renamed it the World Wrestling Federation in 1963. Mondt and McMahon Sr. were given the task to help bring Bruno Sammartino to the fore and transform the promotion into the unstoppable force it is today.
“Toots” disappeared at the age of 82 in 1976, but his undeniable influence on the industry will now be remembered forever in the legacy wing of the WWE Hall of Fame.