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Eddie Quinn


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Eddie Quinn

Long-time promoter in Montreal, credited with creating a hotbed of wrestling a town where its poplarity had waned. His top star for many years was Yvon Robert and he managed Edouard Carpentier in the late 1950s.

Born in Waltham, Mass. and had ties to Boston promoter Paul Bowser. Became Montreal promoter in 1939. Promoted in Chicago in 1959-60 and owned a piece of the St. Louis office. Also promoted boxing in Montreal. Lost his boxing license and had his wrestling license suspended in December 1961 after cancelling a fight between Archie Moore and Bob Cleroux the day before the show because of a weak advance. Was reinstated as a wrestling promoter a few weeks later.

Had been in poor health for several months when he retired to New Hampshire in June 1964. He died there -- in a nursing home that he owned -- at the end of the year at age 58.

Quinn was outraged in 1957 when NWA president Sam Muchnick met with long-time rival Jack Pfefer to see if he would join the association. Quinn's letter to Muchnick was leaked to Dan Parker, who printed it in his column in the New York Daily Mirror:

Dear Sir:

I would like to explain to you again, if it is possible to get the message thru, that for the past twenty years I have been fighting the Cancer of the Wrestling Business, Jack Pfefer. This is the same man that tried to kill the Alliance, and he has loused up quite a few territories of NWA members, including New England, where I have a $25,000 investment.

You, as President of the Alliance, know that everybody in it despises Pfefer, and what he stands for. You, as President of the Alliance, trying to play politics with everybody in it, must realize that sooner or later you have to face the barrier. At times you are much weaker than others. If you think it is good business for the Alliance to have Jack Pfefer consorting and in partnership, or in collusion, or working with certain members of said Alliance, I think it is your duty as a man to bring this to the attention of the rest of the members. Remember, the first thing you asked me before the Alliance meeting is what did I think of the Alliance. I told you all, that business-wise it was no good, as the Government takes care of that. I did express my thoughts that it was a worthwhile social group, but that we should get together more often to become better acquainted on matters pertaining to business. But when you have the bold audacity to inflict Jack Pfefer on the members of the Alliance, socially, it is a little too much for me.

Yes, I did tell Larry Moquin that I was sick. In fact, I was nauseated by your conduct in allowing our common enemy to mingle with the members, thus causing them much embarrassment. I am sure when Lou Thesz hears about this incident, it will only convince him he did the right thing when he left you, and St. Louis and the meeting behind him.

The reason I wished to get out of the St. Louis promotions is firstly, the promoter or promoters have shown no ability to promote for the past two years. I know you spend your time knocking Thesz as a poor business man and Longson as a dope, but sooner or later you will have to take the blame on your own shoulders. Another thing I did not like at the meeting was when that loud-mouthed, blatant individual, Cliff Maupin, a garbage collector of the old school, kept knocking Thesz about his forthcoming trip. It struck several of us very funny that you did not stand up and defend Lou, who by the sweat of his brow has been paying your salary as long as he has been champion and was making you money when he was your partner in promotion.

Getting back to Carpentier you seem to overlook the fact that Carpentier is my personal property. He does not belong to you or the National Wrestling Alliance. He is not recognized by you and neither does he claim to be NWA champion. He met and defeated Lou Thesz June 14th in Chicago via disqualification. In a return match in Montreal he met and was defeated by Lou Thesz July 24th. You should be able to add two and two.

I have consulted my attorney on the matter and they suggested that I write to you and have you return Edouard Carpentier's $10,000. What you are holding it for no one seems to know. If this money has not been returned within ten days from this date, I will have my attorneys turn this matter over to the U.S. Department of Justice and the St. Louis police, c/o The Bunco Squad. My attorneys seem to think this is a combination of blackmail, extortion or grand larceny. Hope this will clarify everything.

Sincerely yours,
Eddie Quinn

"What Quinn has done is play on the public's inherent desire to see right triumph over wrong. The master showmanship of Quinn has turned Canadian wrestling from a near dead spectacle into a million dollar industry." (From WRESTLING, February 1951)

"Dapper Eddie Quinn, Mr. Big in the province of Quebec and unquestionably one of the most powerful figures in the sport today. Cigar smoking Eddie is a clever businessman, who has really gone a long way in life and in doing so has elevated the status of Canadian wrestling and wrestlers immensely." (From WRESTLING AS YOU LIKE IT, Jan. 30, 1954)


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