New-York Historical Society's Bill Shannon Dictionary of New York Sports

Tag Archives: Billiards

Willie Mosconi

Willie Mosconi (Billiards. Born, Philadelphia, PA, June 27, 1913; died, Haddon Heights, NJ, Sept. 16, 1993.) Seldom, if ever, has one individual dominated a sport the way Willie Mosconi dominated pocket billiards for the better part of 20 years. Mosconi was a gifted player even as a youngster. He began giving pocket billiards exhibitions when [...]

Willie Hoppe

Willie Hoppe (Billiards.  Born, Cornwall, NY, Oct. 11, 1887; died, Miami, FL, Dec. 14, 1959.)  William Frederick Hoppe first broke into the sports headlines in 1906.  He was only 18 years old, but he was confident. And all he did was win the world 18.1 balkline championship in Paris.  This youngster was later to become, [...]

Wimpy Lassiter

Wimpy Lassiter (Billiards. Born, Elizabeth City, NC, Nov. 5, 1918; died, Elizabeth City, NC, Oct. 25, 1988.) His full name was Luther Clement Lassiter but he was known universally on the billiards circuit as “Wimpy,” which name derived from his childhood habit of devouring hamburgers (as did a character, named Wimpy, in “Popeye” cartoons), not because of [...]

Ralph Greenleaf

Ralph Greenleaf (Billiards.  Born, Monmouth, IL, Nov. 3, 1899; died, Philadelphia, PA, Mar. 15, 1950.)  Considered by most historians to be one of the greatest pocket billiards players in the history of the sport, Edward Ralph Greenleaf became the world professional champion for the first time when he was only 20 years old.  Greenleaf ruled [...]

Minnesota Fats

Minnesota Fats (Billiards.  Born, New York, NY, Jan. 19, 1913; died, Nashville, TN, Jan. 16, 1996.)  Rudolph Wanderone (originally Wanderon) was a unique American original.  He was perhaps the most famous billiards player in the world, even though he never won a formal world championship.  Yet he was almost solely responsible for the resurgent growth [...]

Irving Crane

Irving Crane (Billiards.  Born, Livonia, NY, Nov. 13, 1913; died, Rochester, NY, Nov. 17, 2001.)  A Christmas gift when he was 11 years old helped launch Irving Crane on a spectacular career as one of the world’s great billiards players. The gift was a toy pool table and it helped him to a career in [...]

Jean Balukas

Jean Balukas (Billiards.  Born, Brooklyn, NY, June 28, 1959.)  Rarely, if ever, has any individual dominated a sport the way Jean Balukas dominated women’s billiards. She was so good that she literally played herself out of competition.  This astonishing young woman entered her first U.S. Open straight pool tournament at age nine – and finished [...]

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The Bill Shannon Biographical Dictionary of New York Sports is an open database of sports biographies maintained by Jordan Sprechman and Marty Appel. We welcome public and scholarly contributions and suggestions.

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About Bill Shannon

A prolific author, wire service sports reporter, long time Major League Baseball official scorer, football statistician, sports museum founder, theatrical agency owner and public ... read more

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