Arthur "Babe" Cranfield

Inducted in 1987

  • Babe was one of the great pool players in American history.
  • As a child, he learned to shoot left-handed in his father's billiards hall in New York City - where he got his nickname by following around a pool hall regular named - Babe Ruth.
  • Won the Eastern State Junior Billiards Champion in Chicago, IL in 1931 at 15 years of age.
  • World’s Junior Billiards Champion: 1932-1933.
  • United States Men’s Amateur Billiards Champion: 1938, 1939, 1940.
  • Winner of All-Service Billiards Championship, Philadelphia: 1945.
  • Eastern Regional Professional Billiards Champion, Eighteen different states:1945.
  • World Professional Billiards Champion: 1964.
  • High Runs: 492 - 488; Over 35 Runs of 400.
  • Has performed over 2500 exhibitions and has made numerous network television appearances.
  • In 1951-Babe retired and put his pool cue in the attic, the cue that Babe told reporters was given to him by his friend, the great Willie Mosconi.
  • Voted as Syracuse’s Athlete of the Year in 1955.
  • He was an avid golfer and won many titles throughout his life.
  • His father owned and operated several billiard estab-lishments, exposing Babe to the game from an early age where he practiced constantly for free, an advantage that combined with his natural gifts to produce an unusual talent. In the 1930's Babe attended Cornell University to study agricultural techniques that might benefit the family fruit farm in Hudson, NY. His studies were cut short when he accepted an offer to tour the country performing billiard exhibitions, which he did for the next five years. Babe has won many titles during his career and has the distinction of being the only billiard player in history to have won the U.S. Junior Championship at 15 years old, the U.S. Amateur Championship three consecutive times (1938, 1939, 1940), and the World's Professional Championship in 1964. He was inducted into the Billiard Congress of America Hall of Fame in 1997.
  • Babe and longtime friend Lawrence Moy have written two books about billiards, The Straight Pool Bible and Essential Pool.
  • Babe died at the age of 89 in 2004