Memphis Wrestling Hall of Fame

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The Memphis Wrestling Hall of Fame was a professional wrestling hall of fame maintained by the United States Wrestling Association. It was established in 1994 to honor select wrestling personalities, mostly alumni of the Continental Wrestling Association and NWA Mid-America. The induction ceremony for the Class of 1994, the inaugural inductees into the Hall of Fame, took place at the USWA's "Monday Night Memories", a tribute show, held at the Mid-South Coliseum on March 7, 1994. Tommy Gilbert, a longtime Memphis wrestler, referee and promoter, led the class, which included wrestlers Sputnik Monroe, Al and Don Greene, commentator Lance Russell, and promoter Jerry Jarrett.[1][2][3]

The success of the first "Memphis Memories" show, attended by over 8,300 fans,[3] resulted in Randy Hales being made head booker of the USWA. Ironically, Eddie Gilbert, with much of the event revolving around his feud with Jerry Lawler, was upset at having been passed over for the position and left the promotion within a few weeks.[4]

On June 10, 1995, the Class of 1995 was inducted into the Hall of Fame. Like the previous ceremony, it was held during a wrestling event, Memphis Memories II, at the Mid-South Coliseum. Wrestler Jackie Fargo's induction led the Class of 1995, which consisted of wrestlers "Hot Stuff" Eddie Gilbert, Phil Hickerson, Joe LeDuc, and Billy Wicks. In addition to the inductees, the event featured a special "legends introduction" of Memphis wrestling stars including Corsica Joe, Tommy Gilbert, Gypsy Joe, Jerry Jarrett, Sara Lee, Eddie Marlin, Frank Morell, Buddy Wayne, and Jim White. The 1995 edition was attended by 3,850 fans.[5] Only one inductee, Eddie Gilbert, was inducted posthumously.[6][7] Overall, there were ten inductees; one commentator, and promoter, and eight wrestlers.[1][2]

The hall of fame ceased being maintained following the close of the USWA in 1997, however, there have been attempts to revive the idea in recent years. Since 2002, the website KayfabeMemories.com has fan-based voting, similar to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter Hall of Fame, for each of the various "territory-era" promotions, including the Memphis wrestling territory, covered by the website.[8] From 2008 to 2010, the website RasslinRiotOnline.com also presented its own version of the Memphis Wrestling Hall of Fame.[9]

Inductees[edit]

# Year Ring name
(Real name)[a]
Inducted for Notes[b]
1 1994 Tommy Gilbert[1][2] Wrestling, Refereeing, and Promoting Won the NWA Mid-America Heavyweight Championship (1 time), NWA Southern Junior Heavyweight Championship (6 times), NWA Southern Tag Team Championship (Mid-America version) (11 times), NWA Tennessee Tag Team Championship (4 times), and NWA Six-Man Tag Team Championship (2 times)
2 1994 Al and Don Greene[1][2] Wrestling Won the NWA Southern Tag Team Championship (Mid-America version) (10 times) and NWA World Tag Team Championship (Mid-America version) (1 time)
3 1994 Jarrett, JerryJerry Jarrett[1][2] Wrestling and Promoting Owner of the Continental Wrestling Association and the United States Wrestling Association; won the CWA World Tag Team Championship (1 time), NWA Mid-America Tag Team Championship (1 time), NWA Southern Tag Team Championship (Mid-America version) (10 times), NWA World Tag Team Championship (Mid-America version) (1 time), NWA Tennessee Tag Team Championship (1 time)
4 1994 Russell, LanceLance Russell[1][2][10] Ring announcing and commentating Longtime ring announcer and commentator for NWA Mid-America and the Continental Wrestling Association; first commentator for the CWA's Championship Wrestling television program
5 1994 Monroe, SputnikSputnik Monroe
(Rosco Monroe Merrick)[1][2]
Wrestling Won the NWA Southern Junior Heavyweight Championship (1 time), NWA Southern Tag Team Championship (Mid-America version) (1 time), NWA Tennessee Heavyweight Championship (2 times), and NWA Tennessee Tag Team Championship (2 times)
6 1995 Fargo, JackieJackie Fargo
(Henry Faggart)[1][2]
Wrestling Won the AWA Southern Tag Team Championship (1 time), NWA Mid-America Heavyweight Championship (3 times), NWA Mid-America Tag Team Championship (5 times), NWA Six-Man Tag Team Championship (2 times), NWA Southern Junior Heavyweight Championship (5 times), NWA Southern Tag Team Championship (Mid-America version) (22 times), and NWA World Tag Team Championship (Mid-America version) (15 times)
7 1995 Gilbert, EddieEddie Gilbert
(Thomas Edward Gilbert, Jr.)[1][2][6][7]
Wrestling Posthumous inductee; won the AWA Southern Heavyweight Championship (1 time), AWA Southern Tag Team Championship (4 times), CWA International Heavyweight Championship (2 times), USWA Heavyweight Championship (1 time), USWA Southern Heavyweight Championship (1 time), USWA Tag Team Championship (1 time), and USWA Unified World Heavyweight Championship (4 times)
8 1995 Phil Hickerson[1][2][11] Wrestling Won the AWA Southern Tag Team Championship (9 times), CWA Heavyweight Championship (1 time), CWA International Heavyweight Championship (3 times), NWA Mid-America Tag Team Championship (1 time), NWA Six-Man Tag Team Championship (1 time)
9 1995 LeDuc, JoeJoe LeDuc
(Michel Pigeon)[1][2]
Wrestling Won the AWA Southern Heavyweight Championship (2 times), AWA Southern Tag Team Championship (1 time), and NWA Southern Tag Team Championship (Mid-America version) (1 time)
10 1995 Billy Wicks[1][2] Wrestling Won the NWA Tennessee Heavyweight Championship (2 times) and NWA World Tag Team Championship (Mid-America version); a popular star in Tennessee during the 1950s, his 1959 match against Sputnik Monroe at Russellwood Park was attended by 13,000 fans and held the attendance record for the city of Memphis for nearly 50 years before the Monday Night Wars period.[12]

See also[edit]

Footnotes[edit]

  • a – Entries without a birth name indicates that the indcutee did not perform under a ring name.
  • b – This section mainly lists the major accomplishments of each inductee in the Memphis wrestling territory.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l "Memphis Hall of Fame". Wrestling-Titles.com. Puroresu Dojo. 2003. Retrieved April 15, 2012. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l "Memphis Wrestling (Old)". Results. OnlineWorldofWrestling.com. Retrieved April 15, 2012. 
  3. ^ a b "Memphis Memories". Mid-South Coliseum 1994 (Jarrett). ProWrestlingHistory.com. Retrieved April 15, 2012. 
  4. ^ Dills, Tim. "Eddie Gilbert Page 3". Wrestlers. KayfabeMemories.com. Retrieved April 15, 2012. 
  5. ^ "Memphis Memories II". Mid-South Coliseum 1995 (Jarrett). ProWrestlingHistory.com. Retrieved April 15, 2012. 
  6. ^ a b Riley, Patrick A. "Fast Facts about "Hot Stuff" Eddie Gilbert". All about Eddie. EddieGilbert.com. Retrieved April 15, 2012. 
  7. ^ a b "Eddie Gilbert". Wrestler Profiles. OnlineWorldofWrestling.com. 2007. Retrieved April 15, 2012. 
  8. ^ "KM Hall of Fame". KayfabeMemories.com. Archived from the original on February 14, 2005. Retrieved April 15, 2012. 
  9. ^ "RRO Memphis Wrestling Hall of Fame." Declarationofindependents.net. Ed. Sean McCaffrey. N.p., 2008. Web. Apr. 15, 2011. <www.declarationofindependents.net/doi/pages/rro0118.html>.
  10. ^ Dills, Tim. "Memphis/CWA #21 Page #2". Regional Territories: Memphis/CWA. KayfabeMemories.com. Retrieved April 15, 2012. 
  11. ^ "P. Y. Chu-Hi". Bios. Oklafan.com. Retrieved April 15, 2012. 
  12. ^ Mooneyham, Mike (September 6, 2009). "Book chronicles Memphis mat memories". The Post and Courier. Retrieved April 15, 2012.