Santo Domingo Santo Domingo de Guzmán, is the capital and largest city in the Dominican Republic and the largest metropolitan area in the Caribbean by population. In 2010, its population was counted as 965,040, rising to 2,908,607 when its surrounding metropolitan area was included; the city is coterminous with the boundaries of the Distrito Nacional, itself bordered on three sides by Santo Domingo Province. Founded by Bartholomew Columbus in 1496, on the east bank of the Ozama River and moved by Nicolás de Ovando in 1502 to the west bank of the river, the city is the oldest continuously inhabited European settlement in the Americas, was the first seat of the Spanish colonial rule in the New World. Santo Domingo is the site of the first university, castle and fortress in the New World; the city's Colonial Zone was declared as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Santo Domingo was called Ciudad Trujillo, from 1936 to 1961, after the Dominican Republic's dictator, Rafael Trujillo, named the capital after himself.
Following his assassination, the city resumed its original designation. Santo Domingo is the cultural, political and industrial center of the Dominican Republic, with the country's most important industries being located within the city. Santo Domingo serves as the chief seaport of the country; the city's harbor at the mouth of the Ozama River accommodates the largest vessels, the port handles both heavy passenger and freight traffic. Temperatures are high year round, with cooler breezes in the winter time. Prior to the arrival of Christopher Columbus in 1492, the native Taíno people populated the island which they called Quisqueya and Ayiti, which Columbus named Hispaniola, including the territory of today's Republic of Haiti. At the time, the island's territory consisted of five chiefdoms: Marién, Maguá, Maguana and Higüey; these were ruled by caciques Guacanagarix, Caonabo, Bohechío, Cayacoa. Dating from 1493, when the Spanish settled on the island, from 5 August 1498, Santo Domingo became the oldest European city in the Americas.
Bartholomew Columbus founded the settlement and named it La Nueva Isabela, after an earlier settlement in the north named after the Queen of Spain Isabella I. In 1495 it was renamed "Santo Domingo", in honor of Saint Dominic. Santo Domingo came to be known as the "Gateway to the Caribbean" and the chief town in Hispaniola from on. Expeditions which led to Ponce de León's colonization of Puerto Rico, Diego Velázquez de Cuéllar's colonization of Cuba, Hernando Cortes' conquest of Mexico, Vasco Núñez de Balboa's sighting of the Pacific Ocean were all launched from Santo Domingo. In June 1502, Santo Domingo was destroyed by a major hurricane, the new Governor Nicolás de Ovando had it rebuilt on a different site on the other side of the Ozama River; the original layout of the city and a large portion of its defensive wall can still be appreciated today throughout the Colonial Zone, declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Diego Colon arrived in 1509, assuming the powers of admiral. In 1512, Ferdinand established a Real Audiencia with Juan Ortiz de Matienzo, Marcelo de Villalobos, Lucas Vazquez de Ayllon appointed as judges of appeal.
In 1514, Pedro Ibanez de Ibarra arrived with the Laws of Burgos. Rodrigo de Alburquerque was named repartidor de indios and soon named visitadores to enforce the laws. In 1586, Francis Drake of England held it for ransom. Drake's invasion signaled the decline of Spanish dominion over Hispaniola, accentuated in the early 17th century by policies that resulted in the depopulation of most of the island outside of the capital. An expedition sent by Oliver Cromwell in 1655 attacked the city of Santo Domingo, but the expedition failed with the loss of 3,000 men; the English troops took the less guarded colony of Jamaica, instead. In 1697, the Treaty of Ryswick included the acknowledgement by Spain of France's dominion over the Western third of the island, now Haiti. From 1795 to 1822 the city changed hands several times along with the colony it headed; the city was ceded to France in 1795 after years of struggles, it was captured by Haitian rebels in 1801, recovered by France in 1802, was once again reclaimed by Spain in 1809.
In 1821 Santo Domingo became the capital of an independent nation after the Criollo bourgeois within the country, led by José Núñez de Cáceres, overthrew the Spanish crown. The nation was unified with Haiti just two months later; the city and the colony lost much of their Spanish-born peninsular population as a result of these events which caused a great deal of instability and unrest. On 27 February 1844 Santo Domingo was again the capital of a free nation, when it gained its independence from Haiti, led by Dominican nationalist Juan Pablo Duarte; the city was a prize fought over by various political factions over the succeeding decades of instability. In addition, the country had to fight multiple battles with Haiti. In 1861 Spain returned to the country, having struck a bargain with Dominican dictator Pedro Santana whereby the latter was granted several honorific titles and privileges, in exchange for annexing the young nation back to Spanish rule; the Dominican Restoration War began in 1863 however, in 1865 the country was free again after Spain withdrew.
The war claimed more than 50,000
Leonel Antonio Fernández Reyna is a Dominican lawyer and was President of the Dominican Republic from 1996 to 2000 and from 2004 to 2012. Since January 2016, he is the President of the EU–LAC Foundation. Fernández became the first elected president of the Dominican Republic under his political party, the Dominican Liberation Party, although party founder Juan Bosch was sworn in as president in 1963 after the first democratic elections held in four decades in the country. Fernández's administrations have focused much on technological and infrastructural development and macroeconomic and monetary stability. On 20 November 2018, Leonel Fernández was elected President of the World Federation of United Nations Associations at the 42nd Plenary Assembly of the Organisation devoted to the promotion of multilateralism and the values of the United Nations, he is a native of Villa Juana, Distrito Nacional and lived for much of his childhood and early adulthood in New York City. Fernandez was accused of capitalizing his organization FUNGLODE with stolen money from his term as president.
The accusation was made by ex governor of the Dominican Banco Central. FUNGLODE is now worth millions 15 years after its beginning. Fernandez is the son of Yolanda Reyna Romero, his family moved to New York City in the United States. They lived most of the time in the Washington Heights neighborhood, a dense neighborhood dominated by ethnic Dominicans. After he finished high school, Fernandez returned to his country and started law studies in the Universidad Autonoma de Santo Domingo, he joined the Dominican Liberation Party when it was founded in 1973 by former Dominican President Juan Bosch, leaving the Dominican Revolutionary Party to do so. Fernández was known as a close pupil of Bosch, he accompanied him as a vice-presidential candidate in the 1994 presidential election. The 1994 presidential election results, which resulted in a reelection of President Joaquín Balaguer, were opposed by runner-up opposition leader José Francisco Peña Gómez and his party. In the meantime, the international community rose their concerns on the tightening of the political tensions and fear the country was on the verge of a civil uprising.
Upon an official agreement known as "Pact for Democracy" a special election was scheduled for May 1996 and President Balaguer acceded to not run in this election as part of the arranged treaty. PRSC opted to present Vice-President Jacinto Peynado as their candidate, however PRSC supporters feared he wasn't properly endorsed by their historical leader, therefore creating a vast independent mass of electors. In the first-round election on 16 May 1996 Fernández received 38.9% of the votes in the first round achieving second place behind José Francisco Peña Gómez and PRD. Peynado obtained 15% of the votes, the lowest outcome in Balaguer's party history which initiated a long-term downfall. After 2010 Presidential election, PRSC lost its official recognition as a majority party, but regained it after an alliance with PLD was announced by Leonel Fernández for 2010 mid-term elections, in where both parties achieved 100% of Senate positions and obtained over 2/3 of the seats on the Chamber of Deputies.
In the run-off election, held on 30 June 1996, the "Patriotic Front" integrated, Fernández thus secured 51.2% of the votes to win the election. He was sworn in as President on 16 August 1996. During his term in office, Fernández's political agenda was one of critical reform, he helped enhance Dominican participation in hemispheric forums, such as the Organization of American States and the Summit of the Americas. The Dominican economy enjoyed an average growth rate of seven percent, the highest in Latin America for that period, was among the highest in the world along with South Korea's and People's Republic of China. Inflation was stabilized in the low single digits among the lowest of Latin America. Fernández began a visionary plan to run the Dominican Republic; when developers proposed the country's first modern port during his first term, he said that "We could be the Singapore of the Caribbean". In Santo Domingo and Santiago, which comprised 40% of the country population, he favored then-called "mega-projects", building numerous highways and tunnels which improved transit across the greater extent of these cities and created OMSA.
His administration gave incentives for foreign direct investment. In 2000, Fernández was unable to run for a consecutive term, his party held primaries to elect a presidential nominee, which were won by Danilo Medina with 52% of the votes against Vice-President Jaime David Fernández Mirabal. Medina, sworn as the PLD candidate for the 2000 presidential election, was defeated by the PRD candidate, Hipólito Mejía. Mejia did not satisfy the 50% rule to avoid a feared run-off election, but Medina, who placed second, recognized Mejia's win immediately. Fernández was elected to a second term of office in the presidential election held on 16 May 2004 with an absolute majority and the second highest percentage in Dominican history of 57%, he was sworn in on 16 August 2004. His victory was due in large part to the collapse of the Dominican economy; this collapse has been attributed to skyrocketing oil prices and a slumping international economy post-9/11, excessive borrowing under the Mejía administration and the failure of three banks in the country: Banco Intercontinental, Bancrédito and Banco Mercantil.
In an effort to avoid further economic
The Dominican Republic is a country located in the island of Hispaniola, in the Greater Antilles archipelago of the Caribbean region. It occupies the eastern five-eighths of the island, which it shares with the nation of Haiti, making Hispaniola one of two Caribbean islands, along with Saint Martin, that are shared by two sovereign states; the Dominican Republic is the second-largest Caribbean nation by area at 48,671 square kilometers, third by population with 10 million people, of which three million live in the metropolitan area of Santo Domingo, the capital city. Christopher Columbus landed on the island on December 5, 1492, which the native Taíno people had inhabited since the 7th century; the colony of Santo Domingo became the site of the first permanent European settlement in the Americas, the oldest continuously inhabited city, the first seat of the Spanish colonial rule in the New World. After more than three hundred years of Spanish rule the Dominican people declared independence in November 1821.
The leader of the independence movement José Núñez de Cáceres, intended the Dominican nation to unite with the country of Gran Colombia, but no longer under Spain's custody the newly independent Dominicans were forcefully annexed by Haiti in February 1822. Independence came 22 years after victory in the Dominican War of Independence in 1844. Over the next 72 years the Dominican Republic experienced internal conflicts and a brief return to colonial status before permanently ousting Spanish rule during the Dominican War of Restoration of 1863–1865. A United States occupation lasted eight years between 1916 and 1924, a subsequent calm and prosperous six-year period under Horacio Vásquez was followed by the dictatorship of Rafael Leónidas Trujillo until 1961. A civil war in 1965, the country's last, was ended by U. S. military occupation and was followed by the authoritarian rule of Joaquín Balaguer, the rules of Antonio Guzmán & Salvador Jorge Blanco. Since 1996, the Dominican Republic has moved toward representative democracy and has been led by Leonel Fernández for most of the time since 1996.
Danilo Medina, the Dominican Republic's current president, succeeded Fernandez in 2012, winning 51% of the electoral vote over his opponent ex-president Hipólito Mejía. The Dominican Republic has the ninth-largest economy in Latin America and is the largest economy in the Caribbean and Central American region. Over the last two decades, the Dominican Republic has had one of the fastest-growing economies in the Americas – with an average real GDP growth rate of 5.4% between 1992 and 2014. GDP growth in 2014 and 2015 reached 7.3 and 7.0% the highest in the Western Hemisphere. In the first half of 2016 the Dominican economy grew 7.4% continuing its trend of rapid economic growth. Recent growth has been driven by construction, manufacturing and mining; the country is the site of the second largest gold mine in the Pueblo Viejo mine. Private consumption has been strong, as a result of low inflation, job creation, as well as a high level of remittances; the Dominican Republic is the most visited destination in the Caribbean.
The year-round golf courses are major attractions. A geographically diverse nation, the Dominican Republic is home to both the Caribbean's tallest mountain peak, Pico Duarte, the Caribbean's largest lake and point of lowest elevation, Lake Enriquillo; the island has an average temperature of biological diversity. The country is the site of the first cathedral, castle and fortress built in the Americas, located in Santo Domingo's Colonial Zone, a World Heritage Site. Music and sport are of great importance in the Dominican culture, with Merengue and Bachata as the national dance and music, baseball as the favorite sport; the "Dominican" word comes from the Latin Dominicus. However, the island has this name by Santo Domingo de Guzmán, founder of the Order of the Dominicans; the Dominicans established a house of high studies in the island of Santo Domingo that today is known as the Universidad Autónoma de Santo Domingo and dedicated themselves to the protection of the native taínos of the island, who were subjected to slavery, to the education of the inhabitants of the island.
For most of its history, up until independence, the country was known as Santo Domingo—the name of its present capital and patron saint, Saint Dominic—and continued to be known as such in English until the early 20th century. The residents were called "Dominicans", the adjective form of "Domingo", the revolutionaries named their newly independent country "Dominican Republic". In the national anthem of the Dominican Republic, the term "Dominicans" does not appear; the author of its lyrics, Emilio Prud'Homme uses the poetic term "Quisqueyans". The word "Quisqueya" derives from a native tongue of the Taino Indians and means "Mother of the lands", it is used in songs as another name for the country. The name of the country is shortened to "the D. R." The Arawakan-speaking Taíno moved into Hispaniola from the north east region of what is now known as South America, displacing earlier inhabitants, c. AD 650, they engaged in hunting and gathering. The fierce Caribs drove the Taíno to the northeastern Caribbean during much of the 15th century.
The estimates of Hispaniola's population in 1492 vary including one hundred thousand, three hundred thousand, an
San José de Ocoa
San José de Ocoa, or Ocoa, is the capital of San José de Ocoa province in the Dominican Republic. It is located north of the Peravia province, was part of that province until 1 January 2002; the city lies in a valley in the southern region of the Central Cordillera. It is located at an altitude of 475 meters; the municipality covers an area of 484.87 km². The town was founded in 1805 by people from the southern town of Baní; the Canarian descendants were the first ethnic group to settle in San José de Ocoa, remaining a significant minority in the town. Other families from Spain and France, notably the Minyettys, would soon follow. Blacks would settle in San José de Ocoa, most of them being Cocolo descendants arriving from San Pedro de Macoris. In December 1858, San José de Ocoa was elevated to the category of municipality in the former province of Santo Domingo. In 1944 when the province of Peravia was created, San José de Ocoa became a municipality of this province; the town became the capital municipality of the new province of San José de Ocoa on 6 September 2000.
Agriculture is the dominant sector in the economy of the municipality. The main crops are coffee and potatoes. Other vegetables, such as cabbage and carrot are grown as well as some tropical fruits. Other economic activities are trade, carpentry workshops and some processing of agricultural products. Rafael Sanchez, better known by the alias of Jack Veneno, former professional wrestler and current sub-secretary of sports, was born in San José
Rodolfo Guzmán Huerta, more known as El Santo, or in English The Saint, was a Mexican Luchador enmascarado, film actor, folk hero. El Santo, along with Blue Demon and Mil Máscaras, is one of the most famous and iconic of all Mexican luchadores, has been referred to as one of "the greatest legends in Mexican sports." His wrestling career spanned nearly five decades, during which he became a folk hero and a symbol of justice for the common man through his appearances in comic books and movies. During his career, he wrestled for Empresa Mundial de Lucha Libre in Mexico where he won the Mexican National Light Heavyweight Championship, Mexican National Middleweight Championship, Mexican National Tag Team Championship with Rayo de Jalisco, Mexican National Welterweight Championship, NWA World Middleweight Championship and the NWA World Welterweight Championship, he is said to have popularized professional wrestling in Mexico. Guzmán's son followed him into wrestling as El Hijo del Santo, or'Son of the Saint'.
In 2018, WWE inducted him into their Hall of Fame in the Legacy category. Born in Tulancingo in the Mexican state of Hidalgo, to Jesús Guzmán Campuzano and Josefina Huerta de Guzmán as the fifth of seven children, Rodolfo came to Mexico City in the 1920s, where his family settled in the Tepito neighbourhood, he practiced baseball and American football, became interested in wrestling. He first learned Ju-Jitsu classical wrestling. Rodolfo has a brother who entered the wrestling business as well, known as Black Guzmán. Accounts vary as to when and where he first wrestled competitively, either in Arena Peralvillo Cozumel on 28 June 1934, or Deportivo Islas in the Guerrero colony of Mexico City in 1935, but by the second half of the 1930s, he was established as a wrestler, using the names Rudy Guzmán, El Hombre Rojo, El Demonio Negro and El Murcielago II; the last name was the same as that of wrestler Jesus Velazquez, named "El Murcielago", after an appeal by the Bat to the Mexican boxing and wrestling commission, the regulatory body ruled that Guzmán could not use the name.
In the early 1940s, Guzmán married María de los Ángeles Rodríguez Montaño, a union that would produce 10 children. In 1942, Rodolfo's manager, Don Jesús Lomelí, was putting together a new team of wrestlers, all dressed in silver, wanted Rodolfo to be a part of it, he suggested three names, El Santo, El Diablo, or El Angel, Rodolfo chose the first one. On 26 June, aged 24, he wrestled at the Arena Mexico for the first time as El Santo, although he was known as "Santo". Under this new name he found his style. One of Santo's greatest matches was in 1952. Santo beat and unmasked Black Shadow in the ring, which triggered Blue Demon's decision to become a técnico, as well as a legendary feud between Blue Demon and Santo that culminated in Santo's defeat in a well-publicized series of matches in 1952 and again in 1953. Although they appeared together in a number of action/adventure films, their rivalry never ended in years since Santo always remembered his defeat at Blue Demon's hands. El Santo was known to never remove his mask in private company.
When traveling on flights, he made sure to take a different flight from his crew to avoid having them see his face when he was required to remove his mask to get through customs. By the early 1980s El Santo slowed down his in ring activities leading up to his inevitable retirement, his farewell tour was announced for August and September 1982. The first of three events took place on August 22, 1982 at the Palacio de los Deportes in Mexico City. On that night El Santo teamed up with El Solitario to take on Villano III and Rokambole in a match that saw the legends win. After the match Villano and Rokambole lifted El Santo up on their shoulders as he received the adulation of the sold out arena; the following Sunday El Santo appeared at Arena México where he teamed up with Gran Hamada to defeat Villano I and Scorpio Jr. Santo's last match took place on September 12, 1982, a week before his 65th birthday. In his last match El Santo teamed up with Gory Guerrero who came out of retirement to reform "La Pareja Atómica" as they teamed up with Huracán Ramirez and El Solitario.
Their opponents included one of El Santo's biggest rivals in Perro Aguayo as well as El Signo, Negro Navarro and El Texano. True to the legend of El Santo he won his last match and retired as the hero he always portrayed in the ring and on the screen, his retirement tour was used to introduce Santo's son Jorge as the next generation El Santo as he was ringside at each show wearing the silver mask and being introduced as El Hijo del Santo. Santo's youngest son with his first wife, Jorge carries on the legend of the Silver Mask, wrestling as El Hijo del Santo wearing the silver mask and outfit, close to what his father used to wear. While El Hijo del Santo is not as big an icon as his father, he is considered a more technically proficient wrestler. In the early 1960s a female wrestler called. Under the silver mask was Irma González, a well-known wrestler who had promised her fiancé that she would stop wrestling, but went back in the ring under a mask when she could not resist the draw of competition.
Richard Morgan Fliehr, better known as Ric Flair, is an American professional wrestling manager and retired professional wrestler signed to WWE under its Legends program. Ranked by multiple peers and journalists as the greatest professional wrestler of all time, Flair had a career that spanned 40 years, he is noted for his tenures with Jim Crockett Promotions, World Championship Wrestling, the World Wrestling Federation and Total Nonstop Action Wrestling. Since the mid-1970s, he has used the moniker "The Nature Boy". A major pay-per-view attraction throughout his career, Flair headlined at the premier annual NWA/WCW event, Starrcade, on ten occasions, while co-headlining its WWF counterpart, WrestleMania, in 1992, after winning that year's Royal Rumble. PWI awarded him their Wrestler of the Year award a record six times, while Wrestling Observer Newsletter named him the Wrestler of the Year a record eight times; the first two-time WWE Hall of Fame inductee, first inducted with the class of 2008 for his individual career and again with the class of 2012 as a member of The Four Horsemen, he is a member of the NWA Hall of Fame, Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame, Wrestling Observer Newsletter Hall of Fame.
Flair is recognized by WWE as a 16-time world champion, although the number of his world championship reigns varies by source, ranging from 16 to 25. He has claimed to be a 21-time champion, he was the first holder of the WCW World Heavyweight Championship and the WCW International World Heavyweight Championship. As the inaugural WCW World Heavyweight Champion, he became the first person to complete WCW's Triple Crown, having held the United States Heavyweight and World Tag Team Championships, he completed WWE's version of the Triple Crown when he won the Intercontinental Championship, after holding the WWF Championship and the World Tag Team Championship. Fliehr was born on February 1949, in Memphis, Tennessee, his birth name is believed to be Fred Phillips, although on different documents he is credited as Fred Demaree or Stewart, while his biological parents were Luther and Olive Phillips. He was adopted, his adoptive mother, Kathleen Kinsmiller Fliehr, worked for the Star Tribune. Shortly afterward, the family settled in Edina, where the young Fliehr lived throughout his childhood.
After ninth grade, he attended Wayland Academy in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin for four years, during which time he participated in interscholastic wrestling and track. Flair trained as a professional wrestler with Verne Gagne, he attended Gagne's first wrestling camp with Greg Gagne, Jim Brunzell, The Iron Sheik and Ken Patera at Gagne's barn outside Minneapolis in the winter of 1971. On December 10, 1972, he made his debut in Rice Lake, battling George "Scrap Iron" Gadaski to a 10-minute draw while adopting the ring name Ric Flair. During his time in the American Wrestling Association, Flair had matches with Dusty Rhodes, Chris Taylor, André the Giant, Larry Hennig and Wahoo McDaniel. Flair first competed in Japan in 1973 for International Wrestling Enterprise, due to a working agreement between AWA promoter Verne Gagne and the IWE. After Flair left the AWA for Jim Crockett Jr.'s Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling in 1974, he began working tours for All Japan Pro Wrestling. On April 27, 1978, Flair challenged for the NWA United National Championship in a losing effort.
Throughout the 1980s, Flair defended the NWA World Heavyweight Championship in All Japan against the likes of Genichiro Tenryu, Riki Choshu, Jumbo Tsuruta, Harley Race, Kerry Von Erich. On October 21, 1985, Flair wrestled Rick Martel in a double title match where he defended the NWA World Heavyweight Championship and challenged for the AWA World Heavyweight Championship, but the match ended in a double countout; as All Japan withdrew from the National Wrestling Alliance in the late 1980s, World Championship Wrestling began a working agreement with New Japan Pro Wrestling. In 1989, the working agreement led to a feud between Flair and Keiji Mutoh, wrestling under The Great Muta gimmick, in the United States for WCW. On March 21, 1991, Flair defended the NWA World Heavyweight Championship and challenged Tatsumi Fujinami for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship in a double title match on the WCW/New Japan Supershow at the Tokyo Dome. Fujinami beat Flair for the NWA World Heavyweight Championship, but lost the title at WCW's SuperBrawl I on May 19, 1991 in the United States.
When Flair left WCW for the World Wrestling Federation in 1991, he continued to tour Japan in the Super World of Sports promotion, due to an agreement between WWF and SWS. He defended and retained the WWF World Heavyweight Championship against Genichiro Tenryu on September 15, 1992 in a match that resulted in a draw. In August 1995, under a WCW contract, Flair participated in the G1 Climax tournament in New Japan, where he beat Shiro Koshinaka, drew Masahiro Chono, lost to Keiji Mutoh. On July 17, 1996, Flair challenged Shinya Hashimoto for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship in a losing effort in NJPW. Once again under the WWE banner, Flair continued to tour Japan periodically between 2002 and 2008, he defended the Wo
NWA World Heavyweight Championship
The NWA World Heavyweight Championship is a world heavyweight championship in the National Wrestling Alliance. Although formally established in 1948, its lineage has been traditionally traced back to the first World Heavyweight Wrestling Championship, which traces its lineage to the title first awarded to George Hackenschmidt in 1905; this makes it the oldest surviving wrestling championship in the world. The title has been competed for in the World Wide Wrestling Federation, New Japan Pro-Wrestling, World Championship Wrestling, Eastern Championship Wrestling, Ring of Honor, Total Nonstop Action Wrestling. With many territorial promotions appearing across the United States, the NWA was formed in 1948 as an overall governing wrestling body. Like franchises, these territories had the option of NWA membership; the promotion owners had to recognize the NWA Heavyweight, Junior Heavyweight, Light Heavyweight Champions as world champions while retaining their own ownership and top champion. Ric Flair holds the record for the most reigns with nine.
The current champion is Nick Aldis, in his second reign. Every year, the NWA World Heavyweight Champion would travel to each territory and defend the title against the territories' top contender or champion; the purpose of the world champion was to still hold the title. The NWA board of directors, composed of territory owners, decided when the title changed hands via a vote. By the late 1950s, the system began to break down; as Lou Thesz continued to hold the title, other popular wrestlers such as Verne Gagne became frustrated over the lack of change. There were disputes over the number of appearances the champion would make in different regions. On June 14, 1957 in Chicago, Thesz defended the world title against Canadian wrestler Édouard Carpentier in a two out of three falls match. Thesz and Carpentier split. In the third fall, Thesz was disqualified by referee Ed Whalen who raised Carpentier's hand in victory; the NWA voided the title change based on the disqualification. Thesz defeated Carpentier by disqualification in a Montreal rematch on July 24.
It had been planned that the NWA would present Thesz and Carpentier as rival champions in different cities following a similar pattern to the successful title dispute matches between Thesz and Leo Nomellini. Carpentier would be able to make appearances in the US as champion while Thesz was on an overseas tour. However, as a result of various disputes within the NWA, Carpentier's manager, wrestling promoter Eddie Quinn, left the organization in August making Carpentier unavailable to the NWA; the organization dealt with the situation by announcing 71 days after Carpentier's win in Chicago that it did not recognize Carpentier's win and had never recognized it. Quinn started promoting Carpentier as the true NWA world champion based on the match with Thesz. In 1958, Quinn started shopping Carpentier around to promoters interested in leaving the NWA. A victory over Carpentier could give a local champion a credible claim to the world championship of wrestling. Verne Gagne, trying to become NWA World Heavyweight Champion for some time, defeated Carpentier in Omaha, Nebraska on August 9, 1958.
This was recognized as a title change by those NWA affiliate promotions that would evolve into the American Wrestling Association in 1960. This disputed version of the NWA World Heavyweight Title was known as the World Heavyweight Championship; the title was unified with the AWA World Heavyweight Championship on September 7, 1963. The AWA title continued to exist until the AWA ceased operations in 1991; the Boston NWA affiliate known as the Atlantic Athletic Commission arranged a match between Killer Kowalski and Carpentier in 1958. Kowalski's victory created what was after known as the ACC World Heavyweight Title and the Big Time Wrestling World title, active until 1975 reforming in the early 2000s; the NAWA/WWA in Los Angeles recognized Carpentier as NWA champion in July 1959 as part of splitting from the NWA. On June 12, 1961, Carpentier lost a match to Freddie Blassie which created the basis for the WWA World Heavyweight Championship; the title ceased to exist when the WWA returned to the NWA on October 1, 1968.
The World Wide Wrestling Federation, which evolved into today's WWE, was the major wrestling promotion in the northeast United States in the early 1960s. Vincent J. McMahon's Capitol Wrestling Corporation, the precursor to the WWWF, seceded from the NWA for a variety of reasons including the selection of the NWA World Heavyweight Champion and the number of dates wrestled by the champion in the promotion. Ostensibly, the dispute was over "Nature Boy" Buddy Rogers losing the NWA World Heavyweight Championship to Lou Thesz in one fall instead of a best-of-three — the format in which NWA World Heavyweight Championship matches were traditionally decided at the time. Capitol Wrestling Corporation executives held majority control over the NWA while in NWA board of directors at the time. Following Lou Thesz's World Heavyweight Championship win, Capitol Wrestling Corporation seceded from the NWA and became the World Wide Wrestling Federation. "Nature Boy" Buddy Rogers was recognized as the first WWWF World Heavyweight Champion.
When Ric Flair won the NWA World title in 1981, he traveled to other NWA territories and defended the belt. He would regain it, as the NWA board of directors decided. On more than one occasion, Flair lost and regained the belt without the official sanctioning of the NWA. In most cases, these