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Baseball Resources at the Library of Congress


Championship Game at the Elysian Fields
The American national game of base ball. Grand match for the championship at the Elysian Fields, Hoboken, N.J.
1 print : lithograph.
New York: [Currier & Ives], c1866.
Prints & Photographs Division.
Reproduction Number: LC-DIG-cwpbh-05089

Many areas of the Library's website include essays, exhibit items, webcasts, books, and other features highlighting the game of baseball. Select an area from the list below to learn more about its general content and to find links to specific baseball features that can be found within each section. To access more extensive portals to the Library's online baseball resources, and locate all baseball-specific collections available online, please see the Portals and Collections section of this guide.

America's Library

America's Library is designed for children and their families to explore people, places, and events in American history. America's Library includes a number of brief stories and features related to significant people and events in baseball history. Links to these items, arranged chronologically, are listed below. America's Library also allows visitors to play an interactive baseball game (requires Flash Player).

August Anheuser Busch Was Born

Baseball Great Cy Young Pitched His First Professional Game

Baseball Great Walter Johnson Died

Cornelius Alexander McGillicuddy ("Connie Mac") Was Born

Fenway Lives: Baseball Culture (additional information about the Fenway Lives: Baseball Culture project appears on the Library's Local Legacies website)

Hall of Fame Pitchers

How Baseball Began

Jackie Robinson Breaks the Color Barrier

Leroy Robert "Satchel" Paige Was Born

Play Ball!

Roger Maris Broke the Record

The Sousa Band

Ty Cobb Made His 4,000th Hit

World-Class Athlete Jim Thorpe Was Born

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The Library of Congress features multiple blogs emphasizing the collections and services of its reading rooms and divisions. A selection of baseball-related posts from these blogs follows below. To locate other baseball-related blog posts you can search on the term baseball across all blogs.

From From The Catbird Seat: Poetry and Literature at the Library of Congress

The First Publication of "Casey at the Bat" (June 4, 2013)

Tinker to Evers to Chance (April 2, 2012)

From Folklife Today

Play Ball!...Aboard Ship? (January 23, 2014)

From 4 Corners of the World

Batting 1000: The Influence of Latinos and Latin Americans in MLB (July 30, 2018)

From Headlines and Heroes: Newspapers, Comics & More Fine Print

BASEBALL HEADLINES & HEROES! Help Us ID Ten Players (July 17, 2018)

From In Custodia Legis: Law Librarians of Congress

Women, Baseball and the Law (September 25, 2018)

Baseball Blues: Sunday Games and the Law (August 28, 2018)

You Ott to Know: Using Legal Documents to Change Baseball History (July 16, 2018)

Baeball and the Law (June 29, 2018)

Law Library Staff Night at Nationals Park – Pic of the Week (July 31, 2015)

Opening Day and the Law (April 6, 2015)

Baseball and the Law — Pic of the Week (October 24, 2014)

From In the Muse

Washington Nationals Western Tour (July 11, 2017)

Let's Play Ball! Music for the World Series (October 30, 2013)

Casey Might Have Struck Out, But Thayer Hit a Home Run (June 3, 2011)

Take Me Out to the Ballgame (April 5, 2010)

From Inside Adams: Science, Technology & Business

New Orleans Getting into the (Baseball) Game (August 9, 2018)

From the Library of Congress Blog

Hispanic Heritage Month: Mexican-Americans and Baseball (October 9, 2018)

Baseball and World War I (September 27, 2018)

Baseball Americana: The Unchanging Game (June 28, 2018)

Baseball Americana: A House of Cards (June 21, 2018)

Baseball Americana: Telling Stories Through Stats (June 14, 2018)

Baseball Americana: Root, Root, Root’s Debut (June 7, 2018)

Baseball Americana: Baseball’s Magna Carta (March 31, 2018)

Japanese-America’s Pastime: Baseball (May 25, 2018)

Baseball Americana: When Jackie Met Rickey (May 24, 2018)

Baseball Americana: Playing Behind Barbed Wire (May 17, 2018)

Baseball Americana: Baseball’s Greatest Hits (May 10, 2018)

Baseball Americana: “Laws of Base Ball,” Babe Ruth’s Shoes and Jackie Robinson’s Letters to Be Displayed in New Exhibition (May 3, 2018)

Play Ball! (April 3, 2018)

Baseballs: The Heart of the Matter (March 5, 2018)

Trending: Celebrating the World Series with Song (October 25, 2017)

The Umpire Strikes Out: Baseball Music and Labor (July 31, 2017)

Sports Broadcasting Legend Bob Wolff (1920–2017) Remembered (July 25, 2017)

Play Ball! (Branch Rickey Papers) (April 3, 2017)

Forgive Us, Yogi, If We Laugh Through Our Tears (September 23, 2015)

A Whole New Ballgame (May 6, 2015)

From New See Hear! The National Audio-Visual Conservation Blog

Talking Baseball and America with the Spirit of Studs Terkel (June 27, 2018)

Film of the Washington Senators Winning the 1924 World Series Found! (October 2, 2014)

Play Ball! (May 22, 2014)

From Picture This: Library of Congress Prints and Photos

Baseball Advertising Hits it Out of the Park (August 16, 2018)

Spectators Pictured “Fanning” the Flames of Baseball Passion (July 13, 2016)

Tuning In to the World Series Before TV (October 29, 2015)

From The Signal

Inside, Inside Baseball: A Look at the Construction of the Dataset Featuring the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture and the Library of Congress Digital Collections (July 12, 2018)

From Teaching with the Library of Congress

Mathematics and Primary Sources: The Many Faces of Baseball (October 11, 2018)

Women in Baseball: A Junior Fellow Meets the Bloomer Girls (August 14, 2018)

Baseball, Bombs, and Wartime Decision-Making (March 1, 2018)

Baseball, Music, and Suffrage? Exploring the Music of the "National Pastime" (March 21, 2017)

From Worlds Revealed: Geography & Maps at the Library of Congress

Baseball Stadiums and Maps: New York City (August 17, 2018)

Baseball Stadiums and Maps: Chicago (July 6, 2018)

Take Me Out to the Ball Game! (October 31, 2017)

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The Library's Exhibitions pages feature digitized versions of present and past physical exhibits held at the Library since the early 1990s. Many exhibits feature baseball-related items. Below is a list of exhibits which include baseball-related materials, including, when possible, the individual pages on which the materials appear.

Exhibit: The African American Odyssey: A Quest for Full Citizenship

The exhibit section "Civil Rights in the Arena and on the Stage" includes displays for Roy Campanella and Hank Aaron.

Exhibit: American Treasures of the Library of Congress

Baseball items in this exhibit include:

Baseball Cards

Baseball Songs

Breaking the Color Line

The Cincinnati Reds

Early Baseball Card

Grand Baseball Match

The Jackie Robinson Story

A Letter from Jackie Robinson

The Mighty Casey

"This I believe. . ." (Jackie Robinson speech)

Rules of the Game

The Washington Senators

Exhibit: Baseball Americana

Baseball Americana features items from the Library of Congress collections and those of its lending partners to consider the game then and now—as it relates to players, teams, and the communities it creates. Although baseball has stayed true to many of its customs, it has also broken with tradition through the invention, competition, and financial interests that still make it the most played sport in the country.

In conjunction with the June 2018 launch of this exhibit, the theme of the July/August 2018 issue of Library of Congress Magazine was Baseball Nation: Still Indivisible.

Exhibit: Baseball’s Greatest Hits: The Music of Our National Game

This exhibition features baseball sheet music from the collections of the Music Division at the Library of Congress. Most of these works are original copyright deposits and represent only a small fraction of the more than 400 published songs about baseball in the Music Division’s custody. They illustrate the remarkable congruence between the evolution of the sport from before the Civil War to the present, and the musical counterparts that have chronicled in song baseball’s greatest moments.

Exhibit: Cartoon America: A Library of Congress Exhibition

This exhibit includes Eugene Zimmerman's 1895 political cartoon, Baseball Game, on its page "Punch Lines: Gag & Single Panel Cartoons."

Exhibit: From Haven to Home: 350 Years of Jewish Life in America

The Home section of this exhibit includes a brief display (image not available online) on Jewish major leaguers, with supplementary text for children about Hank Greenberg.

Exhibit: John Bull and Uncle Sam: Four Centuries of British-American Relations

Baseball items in this exhibit appear on the page Popular Culture: from Baseball to Rock and Roll, which mentions the resemblances between cricket and baseball and includes an early reference to the game Base-Ball from a children's book.

Exhibit: Play ball! Baseball Americana at Nationals Park

Facsimiles of baseball materials from the Library's collections are now part of an exhibit at Nationals Park. Library curators divided the exhibition among seven themes: baseball roots, presidential pitches, congressional games, music, Washington baseball history, women in the game and–using images donated by servicemen to the Veterans History Project–baseball and the military. This online exhibit features three dozen of the items on diplay at the park.

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The Library of Congress's Pinterest board, "Take Me Out to the Ballgame," features a number of baseball images drawn from the Library's online collections.

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Teachers Resources

Baseball Across a Changing Nation

From its first arrival on American shores, baseball has both reflected and advanced changes in society, including westward expansion, urbanization, racial integration, and struggles for participation by women. This primary source set is packed with photos, sheet music, newspaper articles, and baseball cards that allow students to examine these changes and the people behind them.

Today in History

Today in History highlights significant events or figures in American History associated with a particular day. Every Today in History feature includes a brief essay supported by primary resources, followed by a bulleted listed which offers suggestions for finding related Library of Congress resources. Below are Today in History features, arranged chronologically, that highlight baseball-related figures and events.

December 22, 1862
Cornelius Alexander McGillicuddy, known as Connie Mack, the "Tall Tactician" of major league baseball, was born on December 22, 1862 in East Brookfield, Massachusetts.

August 6, 1890
Cy Young pitched his first professional game, leading the Cleveland Spiders past the Chicago Colts.

March 28, 1889
Brewing magnate and owner of the St. Louis Cardinals August Anheuser Busch Jr. was born March 28, 1899, in St. Louis, Missouri.

October 1, 1903
Boston Americans & Pittsburgh Pirates in the first game of the modern World Series.

July 7, 1906
Leroy Robert "Satchel" Paige, perhaps baseball's greatest pitcher ever, was born on July 7, ca. 1906, in Mobile, Alabama.

July 18, 1927
Ty Cobb got his 4,000th hit.

December 10, 1946
Walter Johnson died at the age of fifty-nine.

April 15, 1947
Jackie Robinson put on his first Brooklyn Dodgers uniform (number 42) and broke the Major League Baseball "color line."

October 1, 1961
Roger Maris hits his 61st home run, breaking Babe Ruth's all-time home run record.

October 15, 1972
Jackie Robinson threw out the ceremonial first pitch at the second game of the World Series commemorating the twenty-fifth anniversary of his becoming the first African-American to play in modern Major League Baseball.

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Veterans History Project

The Veterans History Project (VHP) preserves and makes accessible the personal accounts of American war veterans from World War I to the present so that future generations may hear directly from veterans and better understand the realities of war. Each VHP collection receives an online Biographical Information record, which includes the participant’s name, affiliation, and military service details. Some collections are digitized and made available online. You can locate records that include references to baseball through the VHP online database. A search on the keyword baseball retrieves approximately fifteen records. Among them, the digitized Vincent Simonelli Collection (see finding aid), includes letters (example one; example two) from the Vietnam War veteran about following the National and American Baseball Leagues.


The Library of Congress makes a number of webcasts available on its website. The webcasts, which often feature visiting authors and scholars discussing their work or interests, includes several programs related to baseball. These webcasts are described and embedded below in reverse chronological order.

Title: Sharon Robinson: 2016 National Book Festival
Speaker: Sharon Robinson
Event Date: 2016/09/24
Running Time:30 minutes
Description: Sharon Robinson discusses "The Hero Two Doors Down: Based on the True Story of Friendship Between a Boy and a Baseball Legend" with Susan Stamberg from NPR at the 2016 Library of Congress Book Festival in Washington, D.C.

Title: Havana Hardball: Spring Training, Jackie Robinson & the Cuban League
Speaker: César Brioso
Event Date: 2016/07/21
Running Time: 50 minutes
Description: César Brioso discussed his book which captures the excitement of the Cuban League's greatest pennant race and the anticipation of the looming challenge to Major League Baseball's color barrier.

Title: Barry Svrluga: 2015 National Book Festival
Speaker: Barry Svrluga
Event Date: 2015/09/05
Running Time: 45 minutes
Description: Barry Svrluga discusses "The Grind: Inside Baseball's Hardest Season" at the 2015 Library of Congress National Book Festival in Washington, D.C.

Title: The Life and Times of Hank Greenberg
Speaker: Aviva Kempner
Event Date: 05/13/2013
Running Time: 37 minutes
Description: Aviva Kempner talked and showed film clips from a new special DVD edition of The Life and Times of Hank Greenberg.

Title: Bill Veeck: Baseball's Great Maverick
Speaker: Paul Dickson
Event Date: 05/01/2012
Running Time: 53 minutes
Description: Paul Dickson discussed and signed his book "Bill Veeck: Baseball's Great Maverick" at the Whittall Pavilion.

Title: Satch, Dizzy & Rapid Robert: The Wild Saga of Interracial Baseball Before Jackie Robinson
Speaker: Paul Dickson
Event Date: 05/05/2010
Running Time: 55 minutes
Description: Historian Timothy M. Gay tells the stories of pioneering baseball escapades in his new book, "Satch, Dizzy and Rapid Robert: The Wild Saga of Interracial Baseball Before Jackie Robinson."

Title: Baseball Americana: Treasures from the Library of Congress
Speakers: Harry Katz, Frank Ceresi, Phil Michel, Susan Reyburn, Wilson McBee
Event Date: 04/12/2010
Running Time: 60 minutes
Description: The world's largest collection of things related to baseball is housed at the Library of Congress, and a new, lavishly illustrated history of the sport features more than 350 of the best items in the collections, some dating as far back as the late 1700s. From baseball's biggest stars to street urchins, from its most newsworthy stories to sandlot and Little League games, Baseball Americana examines baseball's hardscrabble origins, rich cultural heritage and uniquely American character.

Title: Baseball Americana Symposium 2009
Speakers: Paul Dickson, Russell Frank, Harry Katz, Claire Smith
Event Date: 10/03/2009
Running Time: 131 minutes
Description: Even those of us who love a day out at the ballgame probably spend more of our baseball time in and around our homes, with our families, friends and neighbors. This event explores the many ways we enjoy baseball at home, from watching it on TV, to following our favorite players and their all-important statistics, to playing baseball, softball and stickball in parks and city streets.

Title: The Dickson Baseball Dictionary
Speaker: Paul Dickson
Event Date: 04/15/2009
Running Time: 53 minutes
Description: The Dickson Baseball Dictionary is an indispensable resource for hard-core fans as well as anyone newly interested in the national pastime. It has become an essential resource for those who love the game. Drawing on dozens of 19th and early-20th century periodicals as well as contemporary sources, the Dictionary's illuminating definitions trace the earliest appearances of terms both well known and obscure. More than 25 years in the making, with the help of more than 300 baseball and lexical experts, this new third edition expands the second edition by more than 30 percent, to more than 10,000 terms with 18,000 individual entries. It introduces words and phrases from around the world of baseball, including those introduced by Latin American ballplayers and statistical expressions relating to fantasy baseball.

Title: Reflections on the First Baseball Classic of 2006
Speaker: Roberto Gonzalez Echevarria
Event Date: 06/30/2006
Running Time: 55 minutes
Description: Roberto Gonzalez Echevarria, sterling professor of comparative literature at Yale University, presented "Reflections on the First World Baseball Classic of 2006" in a program sponsored by the Hispanic Division. A major literary critic of Spanish and Latin American Literature, he is an expert on baseball and the author of The Pride of Havana, winner of the Dave Moore Award of Best Baseball Book in 2002. Echevarria was born in Cuba and in his youth played semi-professional baseball.

Title: How About That! The Life of Mel Allen
Speaker: Stephen Borelli
Event Date: 10/18/2005
Running Time: 48 minutes
Description: Stephen Borelli, baseball editor of USA Today Sports Weekly, discussed his new book, How About That! The Life of Mel Allen, the first biography of Allen, one of the most famous sports broadcasters in American history. CNN's Larry King praised the volume as "a wonderful book about a wonderful life; I knew and loved Mel Allen and Borelli captures him in full measure." The lecture was co-sponsored by the Center for the Book and the Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division.

Title: Sharon Robinson (National Book Festival 2004)
Speaker: Sharon Robinson
Event Date: 10/09/2004
Running Time: 37 minutes
Description: Sharon Robinson discusses her book Promises to Keep: How Jackie Robinson Changed America

Title: Baseball Panel (National Book Festival 2002)
Speakers: Sharon Robinson, Neal Conan, Bob Edwards, Scott Simon
Event Date: 10/12/2002
Running Time: 28 minutes
Description: Sharon Robinson, daughter of legendary baseball hero Jackie Robinson, moderated a panel of NPR commentators on the subject of books about baseball.

Title: Jackie's Nine: Jackie Robinson's Values to Live By
Speaker: Sharon Robinson
Event Date: 11/06/2001
Running Time: 49 minutes
Description: Sharon Robinson, baseball legend Jackie Robinson's daughter and director of educational programming for the Office of the Commissioner of Major League Baseball, came to the Library of Congress to discuss her newly published book.

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Wise Guide

This Wise Guide, which ceased activity in 2011, was designed to introduce users to some of the most fascinating, educational, and useful resources available from the Library of Congress. Many of the Wise Guide's monthly articles highlight the Library's baseball resources. These entries are listed below:

Title: America's Pastime at America's Library
Published: April 2008/April 2009

Title: Baseball Americana
Pubilshed: October 2009

Title: 'How about That!' (Mel Allen)
Published: July 2006

Title: Why was He called "Cy"?
Published: August 2004

Title: The Way Baseball Was
Published: June 2004

Title: We are the Champions!
Published: April 2003/July 2005

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