‘Bozo’ Lawsuit takes Pratfall at Court | In the race for sole claim to a name, Bozo the Clown loses – by a (pig’s) nose.
Bozo, also known as Larry Harmon, can’t stop Bozo’s Bar-B-Q in Mason from using the same name, the U.S. Supreme Court says.
Without comment, the high court Monday refused to hear an appeal by Harmon of a lower court ruling favoring the pork barbecue pit. The action ends Harmon’s eight-year fight to keep the restaurant from registering “Bozo’s” as a trademark. Harmon still has franchising rights to the name Bozo the Clown.
But the owners of the restaurant successfully argued Thomas Jefferson “Bozo” Williams founded the restaurant in 1923, 17 years before Bozo the Clown was created.
Bozo Williams’s great-grandson, Jeff Thompson, restaurant owner, says now that the name is clear he would like to open more “Bozo’s.”
Harmon – referred to at the restaurant as ‘that clown’ – argued the restaurant was not involved in interstate commerce and could not legally register the name, but Bozo’s proved its barbecue drew truckers and fans from New York City to Gila Bend, Ariz.
[ ‘Bozo’ lawsuit takes pratfall at court | The Jackson Sun; Jackson, TN; 8 Oct 1991; Pg 1]