After winning most of his early fights, he fought Dick Lee in March 1905 for the 128 lbs championship, winning on points over 10 rounds. He claimed the English lightweight title two months later after a draw with Alf Reed. With titles coming under the jurisdiction of the National Sporting Club, Joseph won his first regulated title in October 1908, beating Corporal Bill Baker to take the English welterweight title (later known as the British welterweight title). He took a 20-round points decision over Young Otto in April 1909, claiming the 142 lbs world title. He successfully defended his British title against Jack Goldswain in March 1910. In June 1910 he fought Harry Lewis in Whitechapel in a fight that was billed as a world welterweight title fight; Lewis stopped Joseph in the 7th round.