The History Of The WWE Championship: Part 1

Adrian StaehleSenior Analyst IFebruary 18, 2009

The WWE Championship is one of the most prestigous titles in the business today. It came into existence April 29th, 1963 when Buddy Rogers became the first WWE Champion beating the great Antonino Rocca. Nearly a month later Bruno Sammartino won the title in New York in May of '63 and his name would become a part of that title for years to come. He held the title for a historic seven years before losing it in 1971 to the "Russian Bear" Ivan Koloff.

A new day was dawning as Ivan Koloff, Pedro Morales, and Stan Stasiak would hold the title during the next two years. Bruno proudly took his title back in 1973. His reign was ended in 1977 as he lost to Superstar Billy Graham.

Superstar Billy Graham was going strong on a ten month reign until Bob Backlund won the title and began his long reign of four years as champion. The first Non-American, the Iron Shiek, won the title in dramatic fashion.

Almost a year into his reign the Sheik would face the man that would revolutionise the WWE into what it is today. Hulk Hogan and "Hulkamania" was truly born January 23rd, 1984.

Hulk Hogan was well on his way to his historic career beating everyone in the company. Hogan had the biggest match in 1987 when he successfully defended his title at WrestleMania III against Andre the Giant. 93,000+ watched one of the greatest, if not the greatest, match in WWE History.

Andre the Giant had become champion beating Hogan in 1988. He would then relinquish the title to Ted Dibiase. This created conterversy and the WWE made the tournament to the title at WrestleMania IV.

As the Mega Powers were on a roll, Savage turned on his partner Hogan. This would set up a match for the ages as Hogan took on Savage at WrestleMania V. Hogan would beat Savage in a great match to end the 80's.

As the '80s were in the rear view mirror, and the '90s were on the horizion, a new age would come in as the WWE would change forever.

Coming Soon: The History of the WWE Championship Part 2