A Blount County native and boat builder, Paul Allison made one of the greatest discoveries in boating by accident when he was in his 20s. It happened when Allison forgot to tilt up his boat’s engine before pulling out of the driveway, thus dragging his prop on the concrete and curling the trailing edges of the blades. With no time to repair it before he was supposed to meet friends for a boat race at the Louisville Boat Dock, Allison competed with a damaged prop and won by a longshot. Allison’s “mistake” led to the creation of the cupped propeller – a discovery that revolutionized the entire boating industry.
Allison boats have won more races and set more speed records than all other boat brands combined. The Allison Boat Company celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2005 and continues to build the world’s fastest and most fuel-efficient boats.
Bowers’ journey to the Blount County Hall of Fame began at the age of 12 when he rode his bicycle more than eight miles from Oakview to Maryville to pitch in the Maryville Little League because his parents were unable to drive him.
Bowers played football and basketball at Porter High School where he was named All-County as a junior and senior in football and as a senior in basketball. The highlight of his high school career came when Porter defeated Maryville, 7-6, his senior year. He accounted for 99 of the Panthers’ 109 rushing yards against the Rebels.
After high school, Bowers went on to play football at Maryville College, playing defensive back, quarterback and left halfback until a broken ankle ended his football career when he was a junior.
Instead of calling it quits, he transitioned to the diamond, playing around the infield for the Scots as a junior and senior.
Once his playing career came to an end, he spent 42 years as a dairy farmer in Blount County.