EXERCISEºRECREATIONºSPORT


HORSESHOE COMPENDIUM

Page 86

     1927 saw the establishment of electric lights at the Birdland courts and many pitchers took advantage of them by tossing until past midnight many times. Before the end of the summer, hoodlums had destroyed the light and they were removed by the Parks Department. In 1938 lights were again installed and are still in use.
     In 1928 a Central Iowa tournament, with an airplane ride for first prize, and a state junior tournament were held in Des Moines. John Garvey, a youth from Boone, won the first meet, and Floyd Saffell of Des Moines, took first and Emmett Moss man second in the latter tournament.
     Frank Jackson won the 1928 State Fair Tournament, with Mossman fourth. This meet saw our first experience with a public address system, but we didn't have another one until 1936.
     On July 14, 1929, a state tournament was held at the Birdland Courts. Jackson was first and Mossman sixth.
     From the time Mossman became a first-class pitcher he had never been backward about belittling Frank Jackson. Time and time again he issued challenges to play for side bets. Sometimes these were published. During the summer of 1929 Mossman did more challenging than ever, and inferred through a newspaper story that Jackson feared him. The results of this was that Jackson was rather "burned up," and that there were a large number of red-hot fans ready by State Fair time. Jackson downed Putt in the preliminaries, but the finals were to be a sensation.
     At this time, and this was the last one, we had no schedule, game by game, for the finals. The finals started and a crowd of over 1,000 was present.
     There was always tremendous interest in the Mossman - Jackson games. There were several reasons. Both were former world's champions; both hated each other and the fans knew it; there was a contrast wherein Jackson was old and a common farmer type, while Putt was young, good looking, fast and active, and dressed in a flashy manner. Jackson was modest, Mossman a braggart; Jackson was fairly large, Mossman small.
     I was superintendent of the tournament and had arranged for Mossman to put on a trick exhibition in the midst, the result of which was to draw about a thousand people about him on the courts. The State Fair farmer police gave up in their attempt to get the crowd back. In fact, they refused to help me.
     The fans presence on the courts stopped several games, and slowed down the finals. Many of the pitchers became angry at Mossman and me for arranging the exhibition, but my purpose was to get the fans entertained so I let the exhibition continue. Jackson was furious.

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