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Mitchell had exceptional ability at using London Prize Ring Rules to his advantage. During his career, he engaged in over 100 fights with both gloves and bare-knuckles, using the London Prize Ring Rules as well as the Queensbury Rules. He often fought men who outweighed him by 30 to 40 pounds. Mitchell took on all comers in London, often fighting as many as four bouts in one night.
In 1880 he became the boxing instructor for the International Athletic Club at the "White Rose" in London, and opened a boxing school at the "Palais Rubens" in Antwerp, Belgium. Mitchell toured the United States and Canada with Jake Kilrain, and later Frank (Paddy) Slavin, putting on exhibitions, sometimes daily and sometimes on the same day as one of his fights. Mitchell was in Kilrain's corner on July, 8, 1889 when he fought John L. Sullivan for the Heavyweight Championship of the world. In 1994 Mitchell fought in his most noteworthy bout, against James J Corbett for the World Heavyweight Title. Corbett won by KO in the 3rd round, winning $20,000.