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Bowlers Journal Timeline TIMELINE

BY J.R. SCHMIDT { } 1941 The birth

of ‘average adjustment.’

Chicagoan Barney Hochstadter starts an annual sweeper for bowlers averaging 185 or lower. Barney’s baby is a success. But the Law of Unintended Conse- quences produces a new evil — sandbagging.


The ABC Hall of Fame

is founded.

American Bowling Congress publicist Eli Whitney founds bowling’s fi rst Hall of Fame. He draws up a list of 26 nominees, based on ABC Tournament re- cords, then mails ballots to 175 writers and radio announcers. Though Whitney had planned on having 10 charter members, a tie vote gives him 11.



THE 1940s 1941

The All-Star Tournament is born.

The Bowling Proprietors’ Association of America

starts a new tournament to provide a challenger for match- game king Ned Day — on the day the Pearl Harbor attack plunges the U.S. into war. Still, the All-Star survives and thrives. The annual 100-game mara- thon soon becomes the offi cial match-game championship, the “World Series of

Bowling.” (Day is shown below on the cover of the May-June 1940 issue of Bowlers Journal.)

1942 2

World War II’s impact on bowling.

Bowling again adjusts to war. ABC membership

drops 20% in one year, and the ABC and WIBC Tournaments are cancelled. Open play picks up some of the slack, as defense workers bowl around the clock, despite a shortage of pinboys. In Chicago, the BPAA continues the All-Star Tournament, while the local proprietors open a Servicemen Center in the shuttered Auditorium Theater. The Bowlers Victory Legion is launched, and the writers begin selecting a Bowler of the Year.

1943 3


debuts new Doubles tournament.

In the midst of total war, Louis Petersen comes up

with yet another promotion: a match-game doubles event. The BPAA invites 36 doubles teams to compete at the Servicemen’s Center. Frank Mataya and Nel- son Burton Sr. win the title, with the right to defend against chal- lenges. Under various formats, the BPAA Doubles remains part of the bowling calendar into the 1960s. (Burton is shown below with his son, Nelson Burton Jr.)


Bowling says ‘so long’

to shellac.

World War II had cut off the sup- ply of shellac, the traditional fi n- ish for lanes. As a replacement, John Picchietti Sr. develops a new lacquer-based fi nish at his Deerfi eld (Ill.) Bowling Acade- my. The new product proves to be superior, and shellac lanes eventually became a thing of the past. The Picchietti name becomes synonymous with the lane oil business.

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