1950 - 1959

The BBWAA did not elect a candidate in 1950 but followed that with six straight years with the election of at least two candidates, including the 1955 election that resulted in four candidates being inducted: Joe DiMaggio, Gabby Hartnett, Ted Lyons and Dazzy Vance. Starting in 1957, BBWAA elections were held every other year, with no elections in the odd-numbered years through 1965. Neither the BBWAA nor the Veterans Committee elected any candidates in 1958, though the Museum’s Plaque Gallery was officially dedicated on Aug. 4, 1958, with several Hall of Famers in attendance.

1950

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1950 Induction Class

Though the BBWAA did not hold a Hall of Fame election every year since 1936, they had never held a vote and failed to produce a 75% tally for at least one electee - until 1950. The top vote getter that year was future Hall of Famer Mel Ott at 68.5%.

Hall of Famers in Attendance

Mickey Cochrane, Charlie Gehringer, Carl Hubbell, Connie Mack, Tris Speaker, Ed Walsh, Cy Young

1951

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1951 Induction Class

One-thousand forty five career home runs were inducted into the Hall of Fame on July 23, 1951, as Jimmie Foxx and Mel Ott were enshrined. Foxx and Ott were the first players to enter the Hall of Fame since Charlie Gehringer in 1949.

Hall of Famers in Attendance

Jimmie Foxx, Connie Mack

1952

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1952 Induction Class

Paul Waner and Harry Heilmann were enshrined on July 21, 1952, bringing the Hall of Fame’s membership to 62. Heilmann was inducted posthumously and was represented by his widow. Commissioner Ford Frick and Eastern League president Tommy Richardson were there representing the minor leagues.

Hall of Famers in Attendance

Charlie Gehringer, Paul Waner, Cy Young

1953

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1953 Induction Class

BBWAA inductees Dizzy Dean and Al Simmons were enshrined along with six Veterans Committee selections on July 27, 1953. The Veterans Committee voted in players Chief Bender and Bobby Wallace, executives Ed Barrow and Harry Wright and umpires Tom Connolly and Bill Klem.

Hall of Famers in Attendance

Ty Cobb, Dizzy Dean, Rogers Hornsby, Connie Mack, Al Simmons, Ed Walsh, Cy Young

1954

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1954 Induction Class

BBWAA inductees Bill Dickey, Bill Terry and Rabbit Maranville were enshrined on August 9, 1954. Maranville’s plaque was accepted by his widow. Columbia baseball coach Andy Coakley presented a citation in memory of Eddie Collins and Lou Gehrig at the ceremony.

Hall of Famers in Attendance

Bill Dickey, Bill Terry, Cy Young

1955

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1955 Induction Class

One of the larger classes of the time was inducted on July 25, 1955, as the Hall of Fame welcomed BBWAA inductees Joe DiMaggio, Gabby Hartnett, Ted Lyons and Dazzy Vance and Veterans Committee picks Frank “Home Run” Baker and Ray Schalk. In the biggest induction ceremony since 1939, the crowd favorite was easily DiMaggio, according to the New York Times.

Hall of Famers in Attendance

Frank Baker, Ty Cobb, Joe DiMaggio, Frankie Frisch, Gabby Hartnett, Ted Lyons, Mel Ott, Ray Schalk, Bill Terry, Dazzy Vance, Cy Young

1956

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1956 Induction Class

The Hall of Fame’s membership grew to 81 on July 23, 1956 when the BBWAA elected Hank Greenberg and Joe Cronin. Under cloudy skies on the front steps of the Hall of Fame and Museum, Commissioner Ford Frick introduced the inductees who both mentioned John McGraw in their speeches.

Hall of Famers in Attendance

Frank Baker, Joe Cronin, Hank Greenberg, Mel Ott, Ray Schalk, Tris Speaker

1957

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1957 Induction Class

Outfielder Sam Crawford and manager Joe McCarthy were enshrined on July 22, 1957. Both inductees were voted in by the Veterans Committee. Crawford, 77-years-old at the time of his induction, shortened his speech and sat down with tears in his eyes. In attendance, along with the living Hall of Famers, were the widows of Roger Bresnahan, Lou Gehrig and Christy Matthewson.

Hall of Famers in Attendance

Frank Baker, Ty Cobb, Sam Crawford, Frankie Frisch, Carl Hubbell, Joe McCarthy, Ray Schalk

1958

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No players received the required 75% of BBWAA ballots for election to the Hall. The top vote getter was future electee Max Carey, who was named by 51.1% of the writers. Because the Veterans Committee held no vote, there was no induction ceremony in Cooperstown.

1959

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1959 Induction Class

Zack Wheat was elected by the Veterans Committee and was the only player inducted on July 20, 1959. The BBWAA failed to induct anyone. In his speech, Wheat called the induction ceremony “one of the greatest moments of (his) life.”

Hall of Famers in Attendance

Frank Baker, Ty Cobb, Joe Cronin, Frankie Frisch, Joe McCarthy, George Sisler, Pie Traynor, Zack Wheat

More Inductions

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