The National Crossbowmen of the USA, Inc.
USA Crossbow

                                     A History of Target Crossbow Shooting in the United States                      
Harry Lloyd (Gran’pa) Bailey (1874-1961), from Elizabeth, New Jersey, is remembered as the father of the target crossbow shooting sport in the United States.  He cajoled the National Archery Association to include crossbow competition in the 1947 Outdoor National Archery Championships, continuing to this day.  

Originally, The National Crossbowmen (TNC), and its predecessor, The National Company of Crossbowmen, received CLUB status within the National Archery Association (NAA).  But today, TNC is on a par with the Flight Division, College Division, and the Compound Bow Division of the NAA.

Crossbow competition was included for the first time in a national championship tournament in 1947, when it was held in Amherst, Massachusetts.  The crossbow competition consisted of two American Rounds - 30 arrows shot from 60, 50, and 40 yards using a multi-colored 5-ring 24” target face.  The gold was scored as 9, red 7, blue 5, black 3, and white 1.  The highest possible score for a single American Round with 90 hits was 810.  Besides the main American Round, our founders also instilled TNC specific rounds, the Kings RoundQueens Round, the Apple Round.  TNC also awards the Karl Traudt Award to the crossbowman with the highest 900 Round during the annual TNC Outdoor National Championships.

In 1947, the winning score for the two rounds combined was 180 hits for 1300 out of a possible 180 hits and 1610.  That was very good shooting for that day when crossbows lost cast as the day grew warmer and arrows were made from wood with natural barred turkey feather fletch.  In fact, an American Round shot without a miss was in itself quite an accomplishment for any archer, as anyone shooting in those days can attest. 

The individual round scores for the 1947 National Crossbow Championships are lost in antiquity, but the average for the two winning rounds was 650.  For comparison, in 1974, which was the last year that the “810 American” was used in a national crossbow championship, Thomas Hock from Cincinnati, Ohio, averaged 752 for four rounds and Carol Pelosi from Greenbelt, Maryland, averaged 758.

The formation of TNC followed the withdrawal of the National Company of Crossbowmen from the National Archery Association when its First Captain (today he would be called President) and officials of the NAA failed to agree on target fees.  The First Captain was adamant that only two crossbowmen, instead of four, be assigned to a target backstop because of the high degree of accuracy being attained with the crossbow.  The NAA agreed to that arrangement provided crossbowmen paid a slightly higher shooting fee.

When the First Captain severed relations with the NAA, a group of shooters saw logic in the NAA’s position and organized a new club - The National Crossbowmen in 1960.  This allowed the new club to remain a part of the National Archery Association.

Fred Isles, from New Jersey, and close friend and confidant of Gran’pa Harry Bailey, was elected the first president of the newly formed National Crossbowmen, followed several years later by Richard Neill, also from New Jersey, then Thomas Hock from Ohio, Rolfe Smith from Pennsylvania, Charles Sacco from New Jersey, and at the present time, William Pimm from Florida.

The official title for the target crossbow sport, or “Crossbow Archery” as Gran’pa Bailey thought of it, is FIELD CROSSBOW, not to be confused with FIELD ARCHERY.  Rather, it refers to shooting outdoors, in a field, to distinguish it from MATCH crossbow shooting which is usually shot indoors on a rifle range.  Both “match” and “field” crossbow sports are affiliated with the International Armbrust Union (IAU), with headquarters in Switzerland.  IAU has sponsored eleven international field crossbow world championship events that the US has participated in.  
                                                                                        Finland              1982
                                                                                        England             1984
                                                                                        USA                   1986
                                                                                        Sweden             1988
                                                                                        Portugal             1990
                                                                                        New Zealand      1992
                                                                                        Germany            1994
                                                                                        Taiwan               1996
                                                                                        Hungary             1998
                                                                                        New Zealand      2000
                                                                                        Croatia                2002
                                                                                        Czech Republic  2004

In the first four World Championships, anyone could participate even though there were not a member of their country’s team.  However, in the 1990 World Field Crossbow Championships, held in Portugal in September of 1990, each country was limited to official teams consisting of up to five men, three women, three juniors, and three seniors (55 or older) in order to keep the number of participants at a manageable level.  Interest and growth at the international level has been very gratifying.  

In the World Championships, two crossbow international - 900 Rounds are shot over a two day period to determine the individual world crossbow champions.  Each round consists of 90 arrows, 30 arrows shot from 65 meters, 30 from 50 meters, and 30 arrows at 35 meters, using a 60 centimeter target face.  The arrows are scored from ten out to one, with a POSSIBLE combined two day score of 1800.  For the next World Championships in New Zealand in January 2000, competitors will be shooting a new 40 centimeter three spot target face at 35 meters.

Medals have been won by one or more US crossbow man, woman, senior, or junior in all of the world championships held to date except for 1992 in New Zealand:

1982, Finland               -            Carol Pelosi, Greenbelt, MD, GOLD, Ladies World Champion.

1984, England              -            Carol Pelosi, Greenbelt, MD, GOLD, Ladies World Champion; 
                                                  Sarah Plappert, Sheboygan, WI, GOLD, Junior World Champion; 
                                                  Lillie Stauffer, Lancaster, PA, BRONZE, Ladies 
                                                  Alan Kaufhold, Lancaster, PA, BRONZE, Mens

1986, USA                   -             Carol Pelosi, Greenbelt, MD, GOLD, Ladies World Champion;
                                                  George Slinzeer, Luzerne, PA, GOLD, Mens World Champion;
                                                  James Thomas, Luzerne, PA, BRONZE, Mens

1988, Sweden              -            Carol Pelosi, Greenbelt, MD, BRONZE, Ladies

1990, Portugal             -             Carol Pelosi, Greenbelt, MD, BRONZE, Ladies

1992, New Zealand     -              No USA Medalists!

1994, Germany            -            Carol Pelosi, Greenbelt, MD, SILVER; Ladies
                                                  BRONZE, US Ladies Team  

1996, Taiwan              -             Carol Pelosi, Greenbelt, MD, BRONZE, Ladies 

1998, Hungary            -             John Gracey, St. Thomas, PA, GOLD, Sport Crossbow Championships
                                                  SILVER, US Senior Team

2000, New Zealand     -            No USA Medalists!   

2002, Croatia             -             USA did not participate!  

2004, Czech Republic     -       USA did not participate!

After the 1985 World Championships, the target face used was reduced from 80 centimeters to 60, so scores were not given above since they would not be comparable.

In 2002, the World Crossbow Shooting Association (WCSA) was formed and incorporated to further promote target (field) crossbow competition.  The IAU had eliminated the Senior division, abandoned plans for a Sport Crossbow division and had no  division for Assisted competitors.  The WCSA included all of these divisions as well as promoting more indoor competitions, another area that the IAU was not promoting.  The WCSA has held Outdoor World Championships in Target, Sport, 3-D, and Medieval shooting.

2003, England        -                 No USA Medalists

2005, Australia       -                 No USA Medalists

2007, United States    -             Brent Hankins, OH, GOLD, Junior World Champion
                                                  James Whispell, PA, SILVER Juniors
                                                  Mike Blessing Jr, PA, BRONZE Juniors
                                                  Carol Pelosi, MD, GOLD, Ladies World Champion
                                                  Ashley Butler, PA, SILVER, Ladies
                                                  Michelle O'Donnell, FL, BRONZE, Ladies
                                                  James Thomas, PA, GOLD, Mens World Champion
                                                  Ted Lasko, PA, SILVER, Mens
                                                  William Pimm, FL, BRONZE, Mens
                                                  Connie Stevens, PA, SILVER, Sr. Female
                                                  Jeannette Price, MD, BRONZE, Sr. Female
                                                  USA, GOLD, Junior Team World Champions
                                                                      Brent Hankins
                                                                      James Whispell
                                                                      Mike Blessing Jr
                                                  USA, GOLD, Ladies Team World Champions
                                                                      Carol Pelosi
                                                                      Michelle O'Donnell
                                                                      Pat Copley
                                                  USA2, SILVER, Ladies Team
                                                                       Ashley Butler
                                                                      Connie Stevens
                                                                      Jeannette Price
                                                  USA, GOLD, Mens Team World Champions
                                                                      James Thomas
                                                                      Ted Lasko
                                                                      William Pimm
                                                  USA2, BRONZE, Mens Team
                                                                       Joe Silvasi
                                                                       Stan Pennypacker
                                                                       Mike Blessing
                                                  USA, SILVER, Sr. Mens Team
                                                                       Mike Gough
                                                                       Odrun Stevens
                                                                       Terry Butler
                                                  Brent Hankins, OH, GOLD Junior MatchPlay World Champion
                                                  Mike Blessing Jr, PA, SILVER Junior MatchPlay
                                                  James Whispell, PA, BRONZE, Junior MatchPlay
                                                  Michelle O'Donnell, FL, GOLD, Ladies MatchPlay World Champion
                                                  Carol Pelosi, MD, SILVER, Ladies MatchPlay
                                                  James Thomas, PA, GOLD, Mens MatchPlay World Champion
                                                  Ted Lasko, PA, SILVER, Mens MatchPlay
                                                  William Pimm, FL, BRONZE, Mens MatchPlay
                                                  Connie Stevens, PA, SILVER Sr. Ladies MatchPlay
                                                  Jeannette Price, MD, BRONZE, Sr. Ladies MatchPlay
                                                  Terry Butler, PA, SILVER, Sr. Mens MatchPlay

2009, Portugal     -                    Pat Copley, WV, GOLD, Sr. Ladies World Champion
                                                  Brent Hankins, OH, GOLD, Mens World Champion
                                                  Steve Pylypchuk, NJ, SILVER, Mens
                                                  Terry Butler, PA, BRONZE, Mens
                                                  USA, GOLD, Mens Team World Champions
                                                                       Brent Hankins
                                                                       Steve Pylypchuk
                                                                       Terry Butler
                                                  Jeff Copley, WV, GOLD, Forest, Open Men Sport
                                                  Steve Pylypchuk, NJ, GOLD, Forest, Open Men Target 

2011, Australia    -                    No US competitors

2013, Sweden     -                    Pat Copley, WV, GOLD, Sr. Ladies World Champion


As for the United States Championships since 1960, the type of rounds shot to determine our crossbow championships changed several times - from four American rounds to four metric 900 rounds in 1975, to four International IR-900 with an 80 centimeter face in 1977, then to four IR-900 rounds scored on a 60 centimeter face from 1988 to 1998.  In 1999, four IT-900 rounds were still shot but the 60 centimeter face at 35 meters was changed to the 40 centimeter three spot target face.  These changes were done in conjunction with changes in the rounds made by the IAU.  Scores would not be comparable here either.  Listed below are the Men’s and Ladies Outdoor Champions.

TNC Outdoor National Champions

Year                                                          Men                                          Ladies 

1947                                                   Paul A. Runyon,   NJ                      None
1948                                                   E. Perkins Jr.,  CA                         None
1949                                                   Henry L. Bailey,  NJ                       None
1950                                                   Harold G. Morse,  NJ                      None
1951                                                   Walter Palkowski,  CA                    None
1952                                                   George Stevens,  AR                      None
1953                                                   Paul Eytel,  NJ                              None
1954                                                   F.E. Pierce,  CA                            None
1955                                                   Paul Eytel,  NJ                              Lillian Eytel,  NJ
1956                                                   Paul Eytel,  NJ                              Lillian Eytel,  NJ
1957                                                   Robert Brennerman,  OH                Margaret Brennerman,  OH
1958                                                   Paul Eytel,  NJ                              Lillian Eytel,  NJ
1959                                                   Paul Eytel,  NJ                              Margaret Brennerman,  OH
1960                                                   Paul Eytel,  NJ                              Lillian Eytel,  NJ
1961                                            Karl Traudt,  FL                    Fannie Brumble,  OH
1962                                            Robert Brennerman,  OH                Margaret Brennerman,  OH
1963                                            Robert Brennerman,  OH        Margaret Brennerman,  OH
1964                                            Richard Neill,  NJ                   None
1965                                            George Gurik,  IL                   Margaret Brennerman,  OH
1966                                            None                                     None
1967                                            George Gurik,  IL                   Margeret Brennerman,  OH
1968                                            Robert Rees,  FL                   Margaret Brennerman,  OH
1969                                            George Gurik,  IL                   Anne Neill,  NJ
1970                                            George Gurik,  IL                   Anne Neill,  NJ
1971                                            George Hall,  NJ                    Anne Neill,  NJ
1972                                            Richard Neill,  NJ                          Grace Kremer,  PA
1973                                            Thomas Hock,  OH                Carol Pelosi,  MD
1974                                            Thomas Hock,  OH                Carol Pelosi,  MD
1975                                                    Rick Lambert,  VA                        Carol Pelosi,  MD 
1976                                                    George Hall,  NJ                           Carol Pelosi,  MD
1977                                                    Rolfe Smith,  PA                           Carol Pelosi,  MD
1978                                                    Rodney Boyce,  LA                       Carol Pelosi,  MD
1979                                                    Rodney Boyce,  LA                       Carol Pelosi,  MD
1980                                                    Erv Myers,  PA                             Carol Pelosi,  MD
1981                                                    Erv Myers,  PA                             Carol Pelosi,  MD
1982                                                    Erv Myers,  PA                             Carol Pelosi,  MD
1983                                                    Robert C.W. Smith,  PA                Carol Pelosi,  MD
1984                                                    Alan Kaufhold,  PA                        Carol Pelosi,  MD
1985                                                    Erv Myers,  OH                             Carol Pelosi,  MD
1986                                                    Erv Myers,  OH                             Carol Pelosi,  MD
1987                                                    Alan Kaufhold,  PA                        Carol Pelosi,  MD
1988                                                    Stan Pennypacker,  PA                 Carol Pelosi,  MD
1989                                                    George Slinzer,  PA                      Lillie Stauffer,  PA
1990                                                    John Gracey,  PA                         Carol Pelosi,  MD
1991                                                    Jim Thomas,  PA                          Carol Pelosi,  MD 
1992                                                    Tom Holland,  NY                         Carol Pelosi,  MD
1993                                                    Jim Thomas,  PA                          Carol Pelosi,  MD
1994                                                    Jim Thomas,  PA                          Carol Pelosi,  MD
1995                                                    William G. Pimm Jr.,  FL               Carol Pelosi,  MD
1996                                                    William G. Pimm Jr.,  FL               Carol Pelosi,  MD
1997                                                    William G. Pimm Jr.,  FL               Carol Pelosi,  MD
1998                                                    Ray Stauffer,  PA                          Carol Pelosi,  MD    
1999                                                    William G. Pimm Jr.,  FL               Carol Pelosi,  MD
2000                                                    William G. Pimm Jr.,  FL               Carol Pelosi,  MD
2001                                                    William G. Pimm Jr.,  FL               Carol Pelosi,  MD
2002                                                    William G. Pimm Jr.,  FL               Carol Pelosi,  MD
2003                                                    William G. Pimm Jr.,  FL               Carol Pelosi,  MD
2004                                                    William G. Pimm Jr.,  FL               Carol Pelosi,  MD
2005*                                                   William G. Pimm Jr.  FL                Pat Copley,  WV
2006**                                                 Jim Thomas, PA                           Carol Pelosi, MD
2007**                                                 Jim Thomas, PA                           Carol Pelosi, MD
2008**                                                 Jim Thomas, PA                           Pat Copley,  WV
2009**                                                 Jim Thomas, PA                           Carol Pelosi, MD
2010**                                                 Ted Lasko, PA                              Michelle O'Donnell, FL
2011**                                                  William G. Pimm Jr.,  FL              Pat Copley,  WV
2012**                                                 Ted Lasko, PA                              Pat Copley, WV
2013**                                                 Ted Lasko, PA                                  N/A
2014**                                                 Ted Lasko, PA                              Pat Copley, WV

*  Held in State College PA in conjunction with the Eastern Archery Championships
**  Held at Brookdale Park in Bloomfield NJ

Like life, the only sure thing in crossbow is CHANGE.  The first several National Indoor Championships involved two Metric-900 Rounds, shot in the spacious Farm Show Building (also called the Cow Palace) in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.  The Metric-900 Round gave way to a FITA-2 and FITA-1, 25 and 18 meter rounds respectively, when major renovations to the building precluded the shooting of outdoor distances indoors.  In more recent years, the NAA Indoor Championships have been regionalized into Eastern, Southern, Northern and Western segments.  Scores from each region are sent to the NAA headquarters in Colorado Springs, Colorado, where they are collated into a single weep sheet to determine the archery and crossbow champions.  Crossbowmen and women do not compete against other NAA archers.  However, for the indoor nationals both shoot the same rounds.  

                                            TNC / NAA Indoor Crossbow Champions

Year                 Ladies                   Men                  Juniors

1972              Grace Kremer     Charles Sacco             
1973              Ann Neill            Charles Sacco
1974              Fredna Ward      Hardy Ward
1975              Carol Pelosi       Rick Lambert
1976              Carol Pelosi       Randi Kremer
1977              Carol Pelosi      Thomas Phipps
1978              Carol Pelosi      Charles Sacco
1979              Carol Pelosi      Alan Kaufold
1980              Carol Pelosi      Erv Myers
1981              Carol Pelosi      Charles Sacco    Matt Huelscamp
1982              Carol Pelosi      Erv Myers
1983              Carol Pelosi      Erv Myers          Mark McGovern
1984              Carol Pelosi      Erv Myers          Mark McGovern
1985              Carol Pelosi     Jim Thomas       Traci Pollock
1986              Carol Pelosi     Jim Thomas
1987              Carol Pelosi     Jim Thomas       Robert A. Wells
1988              Carol Pelosi     Jim Thomas       Jason Marlow
1989              Carol Pelosi     Jim Thomas
1990              Carol Pelosi     Ray Stauffer
1991              Carol Pelosi     Tom Holland
1992              Lillie Stauffer    Tom Holland
1993              Carol Pelosi     Jim Thomas
1994              Carol Pelosi     Tom Holland
1995              Carol Pelsoi     Tom Holland
1996              Carol Pelosi     Tom Holland
1997              Carol Pelosi     Tom Holland
1998              Carol Pelosi     Tom Holland
1999              Carol Pelosi     Tom Holland
2000              Carol Pelosi     Tom Holland
2001              Carol Pelosi     William G. Pimm, Jr.
2002              Carol Pelosi     Tom Holland
2003              Carol Pelosi     William G. Pimm Jr.
2004              Carol Pelosi     Jim Thomas
2005              Pat Copley      Jim  Thomas
2006                    ?                   ?
2007              Ashley Butler   Tom Holland
2008              Carol Pelosi     Tom Holland
2009              Pat Copley      Tom Holland
2010              Carol Pelosi    Tom Holland
2011              Carol Pelosi    Tom Holland
2012              Pat Copley     Tom Holland
2013              Pat Copley     Tom Holland
2014              Pat Copley     Tom Holland

Competition for crossbows is offered by a number of local, state, and regional archery organizations in addition to the national and international competitions already mentioned.  Most target archery groups, if approached, will make provisions for crossbow competition; and recently the National Field Archery Association (NFAA) and the International Bowhunting Organization (IBO) have opened their competitions to crossbow shooting.  Although in the NFAA and the IBO competitions, a Sport Crossbow is more conducive to these rounds.

The future of field crossbow shooting looks bright, especially in the US, after a bit of a lull, new members are showing interest in active participation and the membership is growing.  The new TNC web page:  www.crossbowusa.com has become the main vehicle of advertising for the organization bringing in quite a few new members.  TNC has incorporated as a non-profit organization to make it easier to draw support from outside the archery/crossbow industry and to limit liability of the TNC officers.  The World Archery Federation also took over the organization of the Atlantic City Archery Classic, an annual event that crossbow has been part of for almost 20 years.  Listed below are the Champions for both the World Archery Festival and the Atlantic City International Archery Classic, (ACAC).  We are still searching for the Champions for some years of ACAC but will update as new information comes in.  The NFAA  officially voted to include a crossbow division for tournaments held at the national level.  A crossbow division would be optional for NFAA events at the regional and state level.  To begin with, it will be limited to target style crossbows and indoor competition.  This would mean that crossbows would be included at the NFAA Indoor National Championships, held in Louisville KY and also make crossbows eligible for the 3 Star tour which includes a large cash prize for the highest score over the 3 main NFAA tournaments, The World Archery Festival, The NFAA Indoor Championships and the Atlantic City / Pittsburgh Archery Classic.  

Atlantic City International Archery Classic 

One of the major indoor crossbow tournaments has been the Atlantic City International Archery Classic.  This tournament has been held for close to 30 years.  It was started by Dr. Helen Bolnick, Archery Coach at Atlantic City Community College.  More on the Pittsburgh venue after the first tournament held there in April 2005.  This tournament changed formats of the years and target sizes so the winners are listed below but not scores.  This is the only major indoor tournament shooting longer distances, 40, 50, and 60 meters for some years then changing over to 40, 50, and 60 yards.  Sixty total arrows were shot per day, 30 at each distance.  The target faces began with the 80cm colored face and changed over to the 60cm target face.  The World Archery Federation, an affiliate of the National Field Archery Association (NFAA) took over the management of this tournament in 2003 and as of 2005, has moved it to Pittsburgh.  It is the 3rd leg of the NFAA 3 Star tour.   Listed below are the Champions for this very popular tournament:

                     Year                              Ladies Champion                Men’s Champion

                     1978      Carol PelosiCharlie Sacco
                     1979      Carol PelosiCharlie Sacco
                     1980      Carol Pelosi        Erv Meyers
                     1981      Carol PelosiAlan Kaufhold
                     1982      Carol PelosiAlan Kaufhold
                     1983      Carol PelosiAlan Kaufhold
                     1984              ?           ?       
                     1985              ?Charlie Sacco
                     1986              ?                          ?        
                     1987              ?           ?
                     1988     Lillie StuafferAlan Kaufhold
                     1989                            ?                             William G. Pimm Jr.
             1990                                    Lillie Stuaffer                     William G. Pimm Jr.
                     1991     Michele Pimm           Jim Thomas
                     1992     Lillie Stauffer      William G. Pimm Jr.
                     1993     Lillie Stauffer      Mike Steninger
                     1994     Lillie Stauffer       William G. Pimm Jr.
                     1995              ?       William G. Pimm Jr.
                     1996     Carol Pelosi       William G. Pimm Jr.
                     1997    Jeannette Price   William G. Pimm Jr.
                     1998             Pat Copley        William G. Pimm Jr.
                     1999    Jeannette Price           William G. Pimm Jr.
                     2000     Pat Copley         William G. Pimm Jr.
                     2001     Pat Copley William G. Pimm Jr.
                     2002     Carol Pelosi        William G. Pimm Jr.
                     2003             Carol Pelosi        William G. Pimm Jr.
                     2004     Carol Pelosi        Jim Thomas

   WAF Archery Classic in Pittsburgh PA
The World Archery Federation has moved this tournament from Atlantic City to Pittsburgh beginning in 2005, it is the same format as was held in Atlantic City and replaces the Atlantic City International Archery Classic.

                    Year                              Ladies Champion                  Mens Champion
                     2005                                   Ashley Butler                     William G. Pimm Jr.


The World Archery Festival - Las Vegas

The World Archery Federation, an affiliate of the NFAA officially included a crossbow division at their World Archery Festival in Las Vegas NV in 2003, this was a significant accomplishment being the first tournament for crossbows that included prize money.   In this competition Men shot against Ladies, in one class until 2005 when the NFAA voted in an official crossbow division into their organization.  With that decision, there is now both a Men's and Ladies Champion crowned in the NFAA sponsored events.

                    Year                                      Champion

                    2003                                   Carol Pelosi
                    2004                                   William G. Pimm Jr.

                                                                       Men                                Ladies
                    2005                                   William G. Pimm Jr.               Carol Pelosi
                    2006                                   William G. Pimm Jr.               Carol Pelosi
                    2007                                   William G. Pimm Jr.               Carol Pelosi
                    2008                                   William G. Pimm Jr.               Ashley Butler
                    2009                                   William G. Pimm Jr.               Pat Copley
                    2010                                   William G. Pimm Jr.               Ashley Butler
                    2011                                   William G. Pimm Jr.               Michelle O'Donnell
                    2012                                   Terry Butler                           Ashley Butler Rampulla
                    2013                                   Gary Gilmore                        Pat Copley