The Albany Billiard Ball Company

The Billiard Ball factory was in my neighborhood when I was growing up.  It was located on Delaware Ave. just south of Whitehall Rd.  There’s a strip mall today.  It was a fixture of my childhood, belching smoke  (God only knows what was in it.)

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John Wesley Hyatt (1837-1920) was the inventor of the celluloid billiard ball. Celluloid, besides being the base of photographic film, was a substitute for ivory, long the prime substance in billiard ball manufacture. The Hyatt “composition” ball, with a celluloid base, dominated the sport until the 1960s.

It went out of business in the mid  1980’s.

Early Photo of Factory

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Women inspecting and packing billiard balls in the 1930’s.

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Marker Identifying site of factory. 

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The Billiard Ball Factory c 1985  (Courtesy of the Albany Times Union.)

The Billiard Ball Factory c 1985 (Courtesy of the Albany Times Union.)

Billiad Ball Co  factory workers late 1970s  (Courtesy of the Albany Times Union.. Bob Richey Photo Archive)

Billiad Ball Co factory workers late 1970s (Courtesy of the Albany Times Union.. Bob Richey Photo Archive)

Billiad Ball Co  factory workers late 1970s  (Courtesy of the Albany Times Union.. Bob Richey Photo Archive)

Billiad Ball Co factory workers late 1970s (Courtesy of the Albany Times Union.. Bob Richey Photo Archive)

Special U.S.  Bicentennial Billiard Ball (Courtesy of Joseph Caruso, whose mother workedin the factory at That time.)

Special U.S. Bicentennial Billiard Ball (Courtesy of Joseph Caruso, whose mother worked in the factory at that time.)

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One comment

  1. Thomas Ryan · · Reply

    In 1939 I lived at 58 Whitehall Road. The manager of the plant had a lovely daughter (I was seven years old). I used to hang out around the boiler room of the Albany Billiard Ball plant. I remember it as a lovely building.

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