What was the May Karluss shot?
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What was the May Karluss shot? - 10-27-2010, 07:59 PM

Read in a post about a unbelievable shot put on in exhibitions by Karluss.
Does anyone have more info or a diagram.Have you tried the shot,or seen anyone attempt it?


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10-27-2010, 11:16 PM

Her name is Mary /May Kaarlus - here is a link

http://www.northnet.org/stlawrenceaauw/timelne2.htm

Mary Kaarlus 1901 - on the timeline


Mike Shamos who writes about Billiard history in Billiards Digest would probably have info on her - hope this helps .

If you search spelling is Kaarlus
  
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10-28-2010, 04:09 PM

Mary Van Doren was her real name.
Her Belgian father was Charles Van Doren (known to billiard players everywhere as "Professor Kaarlus") and was one of the world's greatest 'fancy' shot exhibitionists at the turn of the century.

The son of a wealthy banker, but not a fan of the business, Professor Kaarlus was actually a language professor and spoke four or five dialects. He eventually made his way to America and began teaching billiards at various clubs and academies. (example: Benjamin's Academy 116th & Lenox NYC ) He also toured the country showing off his skills as an expert cueist.

The professor also adamantly taught his daughter (Mary/May) to shoot masterful billiards at an early age. Something that she did very well*, but not very willingly. She seemed to resent the prospect of becoming a professional billiard player. In 1915, Maurice Daly wrote:

" The most remarkable thing about Miss Kaarlus was she lacked enthusiasm and seemed always to be working against her wishes. Otherwise I think she would have excelled most of our professionals. She was only 17, with an athletic figure, beautiful and unassuming, and it was was a great pity for such talent to be indifferent... ...The personification of women in billiards was May Kaarlus. Billiards lost in her the greatest star that ever crossed the billiard horizon. "

* May Kaarlus was ambidextrous and could shoot equally well with either hand

Sadly, Professor Kaarlus developed cancer and began to suffer from extreme pain. He commited suicide early in November of 1921, his lifeless body having been discovered on a beach in Ocean Grove N.J., with his legs wrapped in 53 feet of iron chain. (he believed the chains helped to thwart the cancer)


As for "what shot did May make" - Personally I dont think there was one in particular. She made many kinds, which she all learned from her father...

Name:  May Kaarlus Jan 22 1901.jpg
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Jan 22 1901

The article below offers some clues as to exactly how some of Prof Kaarlus' shots were executed. The assumption is that his daughter would have been taught the same shots, so to learn about his, is to learn about hers..

Link: Wonders With The Cue - Remarkable Shots By Prof Kaarlus May 9 1892

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Outstanding - 10-29-2010, 09:14 AM

Thank you gentlemen. Outstanding. Enjoyable reading about some historical cueists. The professor sounds like the Mike Massey of his day.
  
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10-30-2010, 08:47 AM

Thanks to all. It seems as though her "shot" was a force draw shot where she placed the cueball near a object ball elevated her cue and with a great stroke of draw forced the cueball to contact the object ball,jump
said object ball ,force of shot would carry the cueball down table. and then in Sayginer like fashion,the draw would cause the cueball to return back down table for the billiard on the second ball.
That sounds like one very impressive shot!I can shoot the -ovef and under shot which employs the rake across the table but her shot
seems to employ more cueball travel.


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10-30-2010, 09:22 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by alphadog View Post
Thanks to all. It seems as though her "shot" was a force draw shot where she placed the cueball near a object ball elevated her cue and with a great stroke of draw forced the cueball to contact the object ball,jump
said object ball ,force of shot would carry the cueball down table. and then in Sayginer like fashion,the draw would cause the cueball to return back down table for the billiard on the second ball.
That sounds like one very impressive shot!I can shoot the -ovef and under shot which employs the rake across the table but her shot
seems to employ more cueball travel.
i think its especially impressive considering that she was so young, but was still strong enough to punch shots like that. and the fact that she would often make a shot with one hand, then turn right around and make the same shot with the other hand.....is just downright amazing. i couldnt shoot with my opposite hand if my life depended on it!
  
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10-30-2010, 11:50 AM

What about the equipment used back then - Heavy nap cloth + ivory balls more difficult than todays fast cloth and non-ivory balls - better tips today - any ideas on that??
  
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10-31-2010, 10:58 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by maldito View Post
What about the equipment used back then - Heavy nap cloth + ivory balls more difficult than todays fast cloth and non-ivory balls - better tips today - any ideas on that??

i've heard it said that ivory balls transfer english better than modern balls.
i personally dont how true that is, but if it is, it actually would have made some of kaarlus' shots a tidbit easier than they would be today.

on the other hand, shooting those shots on (if it was) a nappy cloth covered 10 foot table would have been much trickier
  
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10-31-2010, 11:02 PM

May Kaarlus portrait from Chicago Tribune Dec 16 1901
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10-31-2010, 11:25 PM

Kaarlus shot diagrams featured in the Chicago Tribune Oct 9 1892

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The article erroniously claims that Kaarlus is a frenchman.
Does "Kaarlus" sound french to you ? LOL
  
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11-01-2010, 12:16 PM

also notice in the last paragraph, Kaarlus feels that "ordinary" billiard playing is not quite vigorous enough for physical training...

his solution was to literally carry a 100lb weight on his back or shoulders while he played...

wowch!
  
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May Kaarlus
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May Kaarlus - 11-01-2010, 02:37 PM

May Kaarlus had an exhibition show with many shots and she performed at times with male world champions.
I am going to guess that the shot you are talking about was a rail first carom back to the rail carom off a second ball and then 5 rail carom on a 3rd object ball on the opposite long rail. This shot is in one of Bob Byrnes books.
I first showed this shot to Mike Massey about 20 years ago, he did not attempt it for some reason.
I just showed it to Preacher Ronn and Sammy in Tempe Arizona last week, On the fourth or fifth attempt Ron went about 6 inches to the long side of the 3rd ball on a Gold Crown table at Kolbys.
I also showed them a shot George Rood taught me.
Shoot the cueball into the side pocket facing from the about half way to the bottom rail and out from the rail so that you can just hit the facing full.
"I have to use low english"
The cue ball goes across table, bottom rail, side rail then to about the first to second diamond on the rail opposite where you shot the ball.
I usually just move the ball to the rail so that when I hit the shot again I pocket the ball in the corner.
Sammy made this shot on about the third try.
Thanks to Ron and Sammy for the great time I had that night!
I realize now that this is a different shot , I am trying to get a table layout to add both shots. {sorry for the confusion}
http://CueTable.com/P/?@2AXlw2BXur1C...YSy1kYSw1kaBC@

Last edited by book collector; 11-01-2010 at 03:33 PM. Reason: added layout
  
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