The organization which eventually became the British Boxing Board of Control recognized the flyweight division in 1911 and declared Sid Smith the first champion. Smith's bout with Eugene Criqui of France on April 11, 1913, was the first international flyweight championship contest.
When Jimmy Wilde defeated American flyweight champion the Young Zulu Kid by an 11 round KO for the title in London on December 18, 1916, he was recognized in both Europe and America as the world flyweight champion.
Pancho Villa's death on July 14, 1925, following a loss to Jimmy "Baby Face" McLarnin on July 4, caused the title to be vacated. A bout on August 22, 1925, between Fidel La Barba and American Flyweight Champion Frankie Genaro saw the title go to La Barba who defeated Genaro in a 10-round decision.
The title again became vacant when Fidel La Barba retired to attend Stanford University in 1927. Several fighters claimed the title including Wille Le Morte elected by the New Jersey Boxing Commission; Midget Wolgast, who won an 18-man tournament defeating Black Bill on March 21, 1930, in the tournament finals, recognized by the New York Boxing Commission; and Pinky Silverberg, who briefly held the National Boxing Association title in 1927 before being stripped of it later that year. After stripping Silverberg, the National Boxing Association recognized Frankie Genaro due to his victory over Canadian Flyweight Champion Albert "Frenchie" Belanger on February 6, 1928, in an NBA sanctioned tournament. Some confusion about who was the real champion was settled with Genaro defeating Wolgast by TKO on May 16 and La Morte in a 10-round decision on August 6. However, the title remained in dispute until Scottish flyweight Champion Benny Lynch's victory over NBA and British Flyweight Champion Jackie Brown on September 8, 1935, and American Flyweight Champion Small Montana on January 19, 1937, which unified the world titles.
The title was vacated when Lynch failed the weight requirement to qualify for the flyweight division and surrendered the title. Peter Kane defeated Jackie Jurich on September 22, 1938, to win the championship.
Monaghan wins NBA and BBBC title by defeating Dado Marino on October 20, 1947. He wins universal recognition of champion after defeating Jackie Paterson on March 23, 1948. The title is vacated after Monaghan announces his retirement due to chronic bronchitis on March 30, 1950. The title is won by Terry Allen defeating Honore Pratesi in London, England by a 15-round decision on April 25.
The title is vacated when Venice Borkosor abandons the title following his last fight against Julio Guerrero on July 10, 1973. The title is won by Miguel Canto Solis defeating Betulio González in Caracas by a 15-round decision on August 4.