Where the wrestlers ate

I had lunch at Clarksville Seafood today, and I’m telling you, it was the best fish I’ve ever eaten. I’ve only had the fish one other time, the first time I ate their back in 2013. Since then I’ve become a big fan of the clams and the oysters. Today I was in a fish mood, and it did not disappoint.

Why am I telling you this on a wrestling blog? Because this restaurant has history. Back in the 1970s and 80s, this is where the wrestlers ate. The stars of Memphis wrestling loved Clarksville Seafood, and many of them made it a Wednesday ritual. They worked Louisville Tuesday night, and they ate Clarksville Seafood for Wednesday lunch before driving to Evansville.

Jim Cornette still eats there. So does Kenny Bolin. It’s the only reason either of those Kentucky residents will cross the river into Indiana.

Clarksville Seafood is a Southern Indiana institution. It opened as the Cape Codder nearly 40 years ago. If you walk in the front door, you’ll see the original menu in a frame – just above a framed copy of the book cover for Bluegrass Brawlers. Yes, the restaurant is mentioned in the book. It’s one of the few landmarks from Louisville’s wrestling past you can still visit.

The decor hasn’t changed since the Cape Codder first opened, and yes, everything is deep fried – even the veggies recently added to the menu (the first additions since the place opened in the early 70s). If you like seafood, it’s worth a visit, and if you’re really lucky, you might just run into a legend.

Louisville’s wrestling past

If you’ve read Bluegrass Brawlers, you already know some of the tales from the 1930s-1950s about Heywood Allen and the Allen Athletic Club. This coming year I am doing more research on the Allen Club and “that gang of Allen’s” that brought pro wrestling legends like Lou Thesz, Orville Brown, Bronko Nagurski, Buddy Rogers, Baron Leone, Mae Young, June Byars, Mildred Burke, Fritz von Erich, and many more to Louisville every Tuesday night at the Columbia Gym.

I am putting this post out in the hopes I can track down relatives, descendants, or other folks who might have info on Allen and his various cohorts. The names I have (so far) are listed below who were part of Allen’s gang (or his story in general). If you have information on any of these folks, please message me and let me know. I would love to hear from you!

Heywood Allen

Heywood Allen, Jr.

Francis S. McDonough

“Miss Betty” Bessie McDonough

Kid Scotty Williams

Blacksmith Pedigo

“The Black Panther” Jim Mitchell

Stu Gibson

George Lewis

Wild Bill Cantrell

Sgt. Buck Moore, LMPD

Johnson S. Mattingly (former KY Athletic Commissioner)

Mel Meiners

Punk vs. Hero

This is one of the greatest matches that most fans have never seen. An outstanding duel more than a decade old featuring CM Punk and his greatest rival, Chris Hero. This one gets a mention in Bluegrass Brawlers and is on the short list to be featured in a new book I’m starting soon. Block out an hour of time, get a snack and a drink, and enjoy an indy masterpiece.

Two Years Ago Today

BluegrassBrawlers-coverIt was two years ago today I went to Ohio Valley Wrestling’s last TV taping of the year. That night I met up with Erin, an old friend who has been a fixture behind the OVW concessions counter for years, and told her my intention to write a book about Louisville wrestling.

Six days from now, many wrestling fans in Louisville and elsewhere will find that book, Bluegrass Brawlers, under their Christmas tree.

It’s fitting that today is the day I officially launch this blog. I’m very excited to continue sharing stories about wrestlers and wrestling, past and present.

And if you enjoy Bluegrass Brawlers, there’s much more to come!