Cranfield, Plus Record Runs Official and Otherwise

Cranfield, Plus Record Runs Official and Otherwise

Back in 2010 I received a note from reader Dave Capone, who told me about an encounter with the late Hall of Famer Arthur “Babe” Cranfield. Cranfield, as you may recall, was the only player ever to have won national junior, amateur and professional titles. He also was one of only a handful of humans who may have broken Willie Mosconi’s 526-ball straight pool record, which was...

The Dean of Pocket Billiards: Memories of Onofrio Lauri

From left: Willie Mosconi, Onofrio Lauri, Irving Crane. Erling Hammarstrom, the son of Norwegian parents, wrote me a few years back to recount stories of his poolroom hero, the famous Onofrio Lauri. I’ve reproduced his letter,  shortened somewhat for space. My sister and our parents settled in Brooklyn, in a neighborhood called Bay Ridge. The year was 1953 and I had just graduated...
Mosconi Records in National Archives: What’s in his case?

Mosconi Records in National Archives: What’s in his case?

Consider exhibit A, above. It’s a handwritten note in which someone has enumerated 13 pool shots, each of which has been described with just a few words. The unnamed author uses cursive letters that slant off to the right. It also looks like he took his time writing it because the script is deliberate. Almost tidy. And judging from the crease marks, one can assume the note was at one time...