JOHN PAXTON, Ottumwa, Iowa
Player: John Paxton of Ottumwa, Iowa, began his horseshoe career in the 1920's. He was a farmer pitching in the What Cheer area, which was a hot bed of horseshoe pitching. Later he began competing in tournaments with two all-time greats, Frank Lundin and Frank Jackson, both former World champions.
In 1939 after some controversy with the Iowa State Fair, The State championship also known at that time as the Midwest National was held at Ellis Park in Cedar Rapids. John won that championship.
In all, John qualified for Men's Championship Class in nine World Tournaments from 1940 through 1959, winning 111 games averaging 66.6% ringers. He best finish was in 1941 when he placed 12th and pitched 68.3%. He accomplished that same average in 1953 but placed 20th with a 17-18 record. John claim to fame came when he won five consecutive Senior Men's World Championships, beginning in 1966 through 1970. That remains a record although Stan Manker won five Senior Men's titles but not consecutively. John Paxton passed away August 5, 1983