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Eddie 'Knoxville Bear' Taylor

at his induction ceremony at Sidepocket Billiards



One Pocket

Hall of Fame

  Class of 2004

Eddie Taylor

'Knoxville Bear'


Legends of

Bank Pool

Class of 2005


b. October 1, 1918

d. September 5, 2005

Originally from Knoxville Tennessee, Eddie Taylor was the elder statesman of the generation of One Pocket legends that were already strong players well before the first 1961 Johnston City event. Growing up in the heart of Bank Pool country, Eddie became the master at Banks in the early 40's, and is generally acknowledged as the best banker ever. Of course he brought that weapon into his One Pocket game with great success, having picked up the intracacies of the game during an early road trip with Earl Shriver.

Never a big fan of Straight Pool, Eddie generally went to the big Straight Pool tournaments only to seek out opponents to match up with in after hours action. One of the top early 9-Ball players as well, back when 9-Ball allowed 'one shot push out' Eddie would simply push to a difficult bank, forcing his opponent into a painful decision that heavily favored Eddie.


* As a tournament player, Eddie was one of the dominant players for the entire twelve year run of the Jansco Brother's tournaments, winning the One Pocket division three times:

  •  1963 Johnston City One Pocket
  •  1964 Johnston City One Pocket
  •  1967 Stardust Open One Pocket

* Perhaps the top after hours player of his time, Eddie started young -- hitting the road for the first time when he was just fourteen years old. While he was still in his teens he was tangling with the likes of such early road legends as NY Fats (later to be called 'Minnesota Fats'), Earl Shriver, and Rags Fitzpatrick.

A very strong one-handed player as well, on one memorable occasion Eddie won more in a one-handed One Pocket after hours match than the champion won at the Straight Pool World Tournament (which of course Eddie did not play in).


* Eddie has made many exhibition appearances over the last thirty years, having 'retired' from tournament competition during the 1970's due to a change in his vision. Even at the age of 86 he was able to wow fans with one of his bank shots from impossible looking angles at his One Pocket Hall of Fame induction event. One of the most universally well-liked pool players ever, Eddie's contagious good spirits have lifted the very game itself.



Weenie Beenie with Eddie --Eddie was elected in to the BCA Hall of Fame in 1993

Eddie is featured in two of our interviews:

Rack 'em up with Eddie Taylor, Part 1

Rack 'em up with Eddie Taylor, Part 2

All photos courtesy Mary Bennett and Diane Garrard; all rights reserved



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