Allen Gets Busted

I’ve been doing some long-overdue digging into Heywood Allen’s pre-Allen Club past in Louisville, specifically pulling results for the Savoy Athletic Club he booked prior to starting his own promotion. Allen became the booker for C. B. Blake’s promotion at the Savoy Theater in the spring of 1930, and in the fall of 1930, he found himself in a bit of a pickle with some local fans.

At a show on September 4, some fans inquired as to the health of local favorite Blacksmith Pedigo, who had been injured during his last match in Louisville and absent ever since. Allen told the fans that Pedigo was “coming around” and would soon be back in action. The fans then told Allen that they had seen Pedigo wrestle and defeat Ray Meyers in Indianapolis only a few days prior on Labor Day weekend.

Allen became “indignant,” according to a fan who shared this story in a letter to the Courier-Journal published on September 28. Allen claimed he had visited Pedigo on Labor Day and he was not at all in wrestling shape. The fan then went on to quote from the Indianapolis Star the results from the Labor Day show, in which Pedigo defeated Meyers 2 out of 3 falls.

It was easier to fool the fans in the days before the Internet, but as the old saying goes, you can’t fool all the people all the time. That said, I doubt that “J.F.B. of Indianapolis,” who said, “This sort of thing, in all fairness to the wrestling public, should be stopped,” was ever welcomed back to the matches in Louisville or Indianapolis with open arms.