Symposium

30th Cooperstown Symposium on Baseball and American Culture

May 30 to June 1, 2018
Cooperstown, New York


The Cooperstown Symposium on Baseball and American Culture, co-sponsored by SUNY Oneonta and the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, examines the impact of baseball on American culture from interdisciplinary and multi-disciplinary perspectives.

Proposals for papers are invited from all disciplines and on all topics. Papers on baseball as baseball are not encouraged. Submission is by abstract and one-page vitae (be sure to include complete contact information). Abstracts should be narrative, limited to three type-written pages. Presentations should be designed to fit into a 20-minute panel segment. The deadline for submission is December 20, 2016. Proposals can be sent via mail or email to this address:

Jim Gates, Librarian
National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum
25 Main Street
Cooperstown, NY 13326
Email


For further information, please contact Symposium Co-Directors:
Jim Gates or Bill Simons

The Cooperstown Symposium on Baseball and American Culture is a unique forum, sponsored by the National Baseball Hall of Fame and the State University of New York – Oneonta, which provides academics and researchers with a platform to present and discuss a variety of topics concerning the game of baseball and how it relates to our culture and society. All opinions delivered during the program belong to the presenter, and do not represent the policies or practices of either host institution.

2017 Registration

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• General Fee ($185)
• Friends of the HOF Member ($160)
• Undergraduate/Graduate ($125 with student ID)

Registration fee includes light refreshments each day, a catered dinner in the Hall of Fame Plaque Gallery on Thursday, and a three-day pass to the Hall of Fame. Per diem rates are available for those unable to attend the entire symposium ($50 for Wednesday or Friday, and $100 for Thursday which includes dinner). A limited number of extra dinner tickets are available at $40 per.

2017 Program

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Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Concurrent Session 1: African-American Baseball History: 150 Plus Years and Counting

Bullpen Theater (1:00pm to 2:15pm)
Moderator: Ed Edmonds (University of Notre Dame; South Bend, Indiana)

“A Novel Game”: The Team That Crossed Baseball’s Color Line 80 Years Before Jackie
Daniel Biddle (University of Delaware; Newark, Delaware)
Murray Dubin (The Philadelphia Inquirer; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania)

The Negro National League and Johnson Howard Johnson: A President in Troubled Times
Larry Hogan (Union County College; Cranford, New Jersey)


Concurrent Session 2: Ballparks, Civic Pride and Urban Identity

Learning Center (1:00pm to 2:15pm)
Moderator: David Krell (Jersey City, New Jersey)

Money Talks: Public Funding for a New Ballpark for the Texas Rangers
Patricia Bryan (University of North Carolina; Chapel Hill, North Carolina)

“Are the Big Leagues in Baltimore’s Future?”: The Fear of Losing in Charm City, 1974-1984
Richard Hardesty (Anne Arundel Community College; Arnold, Maryland)

#14FOREVER: Nostalgia, Pete Rose, and the Cincinnati Reds
Todd McDorman (Wabash College; Crawfordsville, Indiana)


Concurrent Session 3: Baseball, Racial Politics and Social Justice

Bullpen Theater (2:30pm to 3:30pm)
Moderator: Willie Steele (Lipscomb University; Nashville, Tennessee)

Robinson Agonistes: The Curious Bromance and Breakup of Jackie Robinson and Richard Nixon
J.S. Moore (Radford University; Radford, Virginia)

“Baseball is a white man’s sport”: A Study of Baseball’s Treatment of Racial Protests
Robert S. Brown (Mt. Ida College; Newton, Massachusetts)


Concurrent Session 4: Baseball and Social Media: What the Tweet is Going On?

Learning Center (2:30pm to 3:30pm)
Moderator: Paul Hensler (Ellington, Connecticut)

Baseball: The First Social Network
Melissa Booker (Society for American Baseball Research; Portland, Oregon)

#Tweet Me Out to the Ball Game, Check Me Into the Crowd: Baseball and Social Media
Patrick Edens (Thomas Edens Law; Titusville, Florida)
Daniel Chwalisz (Barry University School of Law; Orlando, Florida)


Concurrent Session 5: Baseball and Race: The Continuing Challenge

Bullpen Theater (3:45pm to 5:00pm)
Moderator: Dave Bohmer (DePauw University; Greencastle, Indiana)

White Face in a Black Place: Eddie Klep and the Integration of the Negro Leagues
David Moriah (Cornell University; Ithaca, New York)

WAR, Race, Ethnicity and Collecting: Discrimination for Hall of Fame Player Baseball Cards
Michael McAvoy (State University of New York – Oneonta; Oneonta, New York)

The One Constant Through the Years: Baseball and American Fatherhood
Kevin Stuart (Austin Institute for the Study of Family and Culture; Austin, Texas)


Concurrent Session 6: Baseball on Stage and Screen

Learning Center (3:45pm to 5:00pm)
Moderator: Richard Pioreck (Hofstra University; Hempstead, New York)

Coming Home: The Presence of Baseball in Stage and Screen Musicals in Post-World War II America
Jeffrey M. Katz (New York Public Library; New York, New York)

“Ball Four” Goes Hollywood: A Cultural Critique of the 1970s Television Series
David Krell (Jersey City, New Jersey)

Troy Maxson in the Twenty-First Century
Christopher Bell (University of North Georgia; Gainesville, Georgia)


Keynote Address: 29 Years and Counting

Hall of Fame Plaque Gallery (7:00pm to 8:30pm)
Moderator: Bill Simons (State University of New York – Oneonta; Oneonta, New York)

What Were We Thinking?: A History of Ignoring Competitive Advantage
Brian Kenny (MLB Network; New York, New York)


Thursday, June 1, 2017

Concurrent Session 7: Women in Baseball

Bullpen Theater (9:15am to 10:30am)
Moderator: Ginny Skinner-Linnenberg (Nazareth College; Rochester, New York)

Myth-Making and Memory: Nineteenth-Century Female Baseball Players in Popular Culture
Debra Shattuck (John Witherspoon College; Rapid City, South Dakota)

Beyond Effa Manley: Female Owners in the Negro Leagues
Leslie Heaphy (Kent State University – Stark; North Canton, Ohio)

Baseball’s Gender Problem
Elizabeth Benn (Columbia University; New York, New York)


Concurrent Session 8: Baseball Literature: The Write Stuff

Learning Center (9:15am to 10:30am)
Moderator: Peter Rutkoff (Kenyon College; Gambier, Ohio)

“a whiff of the classics”: Baseball, The Maestro & the Commissioner
Kenneth Sammond (Fairleigh Dickinson University; Madison, New Jersey)

Poems as Submarine Sinkers: The Striking Words of Dan Quisenberry
Joseph Stanton (University of Hawaii – Manoa; Honolulu, Hawaii)

We Interrupt This Marriage for Baseball Season: The Evolution of Baseball Wives’ Writings
Willie Steele (Lipscomb University; Nashville, Tennessee)


Concurrent Session 9: Skirting the Issue VII

Bullpen Theater (10:45am to 12:00pm)
Moderator: Jean Hastings Ardell (NINE Spring Training Conference)

The High Times and Challenges of Women Who Play Baseball
Gabrielle Augustine (National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum)
Marti Sementelli (United States Women’s World Cup Baseball Team)
Justine Siegal (Baseball For All)
Kat Williams (International Women’s Baseball Center)


Concurrent Session 10: Marketing and Financial Issues

Learning Center (10:45am to 12:00pm)
Moderator: Daniel Linnenberg (University of Rochester; Rochester, New York)

Baseball’s Salary Cap: Lessons from the Limit Agreement of 1885
Ted Curtis (Lynn University; Boca Raton, Florida)

Racing Presidents: Baseball’s Most Ingenious Marketing Campaign
Larry Gramling (University of Connecticut; Storrs, Connecticut)
Terese Karmel (University of Connecticut; Storrs, Connecticut)

Symbols Matter: It’s Time for the Cleveland Indians to Retire the Franchise Name and Logo
Timothy Jurkovac (Bowling Green State University – Firelands; Huron, Ohio)


Book Signing Session 1

Library Atrium (12:00pm to 12:45pm)

Brian Kenny – Ahead of the Curve: Inside the Baseball Revolution
Jean Hastings Ardell – Making My Pitch: A Woman’s Baseball Odyssey
Debra Shattuck – Bloomer Girls: Women Baseball Pioneers
Kat Williams – The All-American Girls After the AAGPBL


Concurrent Session 11: Facing Special Challenges

Bullpen Theater (1:00pm to 2:15pm)
Moderator: Ron Flores (Connecticut College; New London, Connecticut)

No Dummy: The Brief Career of Dick Sipek
Rebecca Edwards (Rochester Institute of Technology; Rochester, New York)

“Baseball is ninety percent mental and the other half is physical”: Mental Health Issues Within Baseball
Ginny Skinner-Linnenberg (Nazareth College; Rochester, New York)
Daniel Linnenberg (University of Rochester; Rochester, New York)

Alzheimer’s, Reminiscence and Baseball: The Central Texas SABR Model
Jim Kenton (BasebALZ Reminiscence Program; Austin, Texas)
Michael Ego (University of Connecticut; Stamford, Connecticut)


Concurrent Session 12: Baseball and the Media

Learning Center (1:00pm to 2:15pm)
Moderator: Gabrielle Augustine (National Baseball Hall of Fame; Cooperstown, New York)

Baseball Scorecards as Metaphor for Transmedia Storytelling in Sports Journalism
Kate Yanchulis (The Daily Press; Newport News, Virginia)

The Other Chase: Media Coverage of Pete Rose’s 1978 44-Game Hit Streak and Parasocial Interaction
Herman Howard (Angelo State University; San Angelo, Texas)
Henry Counts (Benedict College; Columbia, South Carolina)


Concurrent Session 13: Crime and Punishment

Bullpen Theater (2:30pm to 3:30pm)
Moderator: David Alexander (John F. Kennedy Museum; Hyannis, Massachusetts)

Shooting the Sheriff: Race and Gender in a Bar Room Fracas
Charles DeMotte (State University of New York – Cortland; Cortland, New York)

The 1932 Anamosa Snappers: Prison Baseball and the Saga of Casey Coburn
Thomas Wolf (Chapel Hill, North Carolina)


Concurrent Session 14: Baseball in Lore and Literature

Learning Center (2:30pm to 3:30pm)
Moderator: Todd McDorman (Wabash College; Crawfordsville, Indiana)

Reading Blue: A Study of Dodgers Literature Reveals a Plethora of Lessor Known Stories
Ed Edmonds (University of Notre Dame; South Bend, Indiana)
Frank Houdek (Southern Illinois University; Carbondale, Illinois)

Written Out of History: Women Baseball Writers, 1905-1945
Donna Halper (Lesley University; Cambridge, Massachusetts)


Concurrent Session 15: Blues City Baseball

Bullpen Theater (3:45pm to 4:45pm)
Moderator: Nathan Tweedie (National Baseball Hall of Fame; Cooperstown, New York)

The Harassment of Dr. J.B. Martin: A Story of Southern Paternalism in 1940 Memphis
Keith Wood (University of Memphis; Memphis, Tennessee)

The Road to Jackie Robinson: Stories from Negro League Players
Curt Hart (University of Memphis; Memphis, Tennessee)


Concurrent Session 16: Steel City Stories

Learning Center (3:45pm to 4:45pm)
Moderator: Tom Hogle (State University of New York – Morrisville; Morrisville, New York)

Clemente and Stargell: A Relationship Forged in Pittsburgh
Mark Altschuler (Bergen Community College; Paramus, New Jersey)
Jeffrey Miller (Shady Side Academy; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania)

Uniquely Celebrating Baseball: The Annual Gathering of Pirates Fans Each October 13th at the Wall of Forbes Field
Richard Puerzer (Hofstra University: Hempstead, New York)


Town Ball Game

Cooper Park (5:30pm to 7:00pm)

Hosts: Tom Heitz and Peter Young (Leatherstocking Base Ball Club; Cooperstown, New York)

Today’s game of baseball can trace its origins back to a number of stick and ball games played in the American colonies. Weather permitting, local historian Tom Heitz will serve as host, instructor and umpire in this re-creation of a vintage town ball game, circa the 1840s. All Symposium participants are invited to join in and play. Everyone will have the opportunity to play the field and take a turn swinging the bat. Remember, no gloves allowed. Dress casually and join in the fun. In the event of inclement weather, please use this free time to explore the museum.


Dinner

Hall of Fame Plaque Gallery (7:00pm to 8:30pm)

Host: Jim Gates (National Baseball Hall of Fame; Cooperstown, New York)

The annual dinner will be held immediately following the Town Ball Game. We will walk over to the Hall of Fame Main Street entrance to enjoy a barbecue chicken dinner, which will include an appearance by The Mighty Casey.

A vegetarian option is available with an advance request.

Dinner ticket required for this event.


Friday, June 2, 2017

Concurrent Session 17: Umpires: Call ’em as You See ’em

Bullpen Theater (9:15am to 10:30am)
Moderator: Richard Sternberg (Village of Cooperstown Trustee; Cooperstown, New York)

Aside the Baseline: Takeout Slides and Political Questions in Baseball
William Blake (University of Maryland – Baltimore County; Baltimore, Maryland)

Baseball Behavior and Ejections: Does America’s Pastime Represent America’s Culture?
Joel Vallett (Boise State University; Boise, Idaho)
Gregory Hill (Boise State University; Boise, Idaho)

How Rocket Science Made Its Way Into Baseball and the Strike Zone
Victor Tom (BAE Systems; Burlington, Massachusetts)


Concurrent Session 18: Harvesting a Bumper Crop: Garden State Baseball

Learning Center (9:15am to 10:30am)
Moderator: Mark Altschuler (Bergen Community College; Paramus, New Jersey)

The Lackawanna League and Maplewood Maples, 1905-1965: Three Score Years of the Preeminent Amateur League in the Garden State
Keith Spalding Robbins (Wake Forest, North Carolina)

The Orange Athletic Club and the Development of Sport: How a Local Bowling Team Impacted Baseball and America
Jonathan Dunkle (Dark Ballfields; Christiana, Pennsylvania)

Crossing Bats “Up South”: When the Negro Leagues Played in Morris County, New Jersey
Jan Williams (Morris County Division of Planning and Preservation;
Morristown, New Jersey)


Concurrent Session 19: Baseball in the Boardroom

Bullpen Theater (10:45am to 12:00pm)
Moderator: Mike McAvoy (State University of New York – Oneonta; Oneonta, New York)

A Contemporary (1960-61) Defense of the Infamous Frick Asterisk
Dave Bohmer (DePauw University; Greencastle, Indiana)

A Tale of Two Owners: The Parallel but Asymmetrical Careers of Gussie Busch and Ewing Kauffman
Roger Launius (Launius Historical Services; Auburn, Alabama)

Bill Veeck Jr.: Baseball’s Promotional Genius
Millard Fisher (National Institutes of Health; Atlanta Georgia)


Concurrent Session 20: Local Baseball Stories

Learning Center (10:45 to 12:00pm)
Moderator: Bill Simons (State University of New York – Oneonta; Oneonta, New York)

The Baseball Boys of Onionville: The Rise and Fall of My Town’s Team
Jay Kimiecik (Miami University; Oxford, Ohio)

A House Divided: Crucibles of Cultural Change in Intracity World Series
Richard Pioreck (Hofstra University; Hempstead, New York)

Baseball in the Berkshires: A County’s Common Bond
Tom Daly (Baseball in the Berkshires; Canaan, New York)
Kevin Larkin (Baseball in the Berkshires; Great Barrington, Massachusetts)
Larry Moore (National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum; Cooperstown, New York)


Book Signing Session 2

Library Atrium (12:00pm to 12:45pm)

Mark Kingwell – Fail Better: Why Baseball Matters
George Gmelch – Baseball Beyond Our Borders: An International Pastime
Daniel Biddle and Murray Dubbin - Tasting Freedom: Octavius Catto and the Battle for Equality in Civil War America


Concurrent Session 21: Baseball and Religious Angles

Bullpen Theater (1:00pm to 2:15pm)
Moderator: Nancy Cannon (State University of New York – Oneonta; Oneonta, New York)

Cathedrals, Relics, and Spiritual Homes: Baseball Tourism as “Holy Journey”
Tom Leuze (Oakland City University; Oakland City, Indiana)

Craft in the Clubhouse: A Comparative Study of American Freemasonry and the National Game
Nathan Tweedie (National Baseball Hall of Fame; Cooperstown, New York)

Professional Baseball’s Struggle Against Sunday Blue Laws
George Skornickel (Society for American Baseball Research; Tarentum, Pennsylvania)


Concurrent Session 22: Baseball Potpourri

Learning Center (1:00pm to 2:15pm)
Moderator: Richard Puerzer (Hofstra University; Hempstead, New York)

Baseball and America’s Founding Fathers: Thomas Jefferson and “Games Played With the Ball”
Alan Levy (Slippery Rock University; Slippery Rock, Pennsylvania)

“If we had known he wanted to be a dictator, we would have made an umpire out of him”: A Historical and First-Hand Exploration of Cuba’s and Fidel Castro’s Abiding Passion For Baseball
Lee Lowenfish (Chautauqua Institution; New York, New York)

“Double Play…ers” Riley to Hitchcock to Rice: Major Leaguers in the NFL, NBA, NHL
Wayne Patterson (Howard University; Washington, District of Columbia


Concurrent Session 23: Baseball and Technology

Bullpen Theater (2:30pm to 3:30pm)
Moderator: David Krell (Jersey City, New Jersey)

Does IT Matter?: Baseball and the Rise of Information Technology in the 1960s
Paul Hensler (Ellington, Connecticut)

The Effects of Technological Advancements and Media on MLB Baseball Fans
Daniel Sargeant (Lasell College; Newton, Massachusetts)
Thomas Colvell (Lasell College; Newton, Massachusetts)
Lane P. Sulzer (Lasell College; Newton, Massachusetts)


Concurrent Session 24: Baseball Scholars: The Next Generation

Learning Center (2:30pm to 3:30pm)
Moderator: Matt Rothenberg (National Baseball Hall of Fame; Cooperstown, New York)

A Passion That Lasts a Lifetime: The Father/Daughter Relationship in Baseball
Maggie Siciliano (Syracuse University; Syracuse, New York)

If Only I Could Have Thrown Strikes: The Legend of Steve Dalkowski
Cody Colston (Anne Arundel Community College; Arnold, Maryland)


Session 25: Wrapping It Up With Gandhi

Bullpen Theater (3:45pm to 4:15pm)
Moderator: Bill Simons (State University of New York – Oneonta; Oneonta, New York)

Closing comments and viewing of short film Gandhi at the Bat.


Session 26: Poetry Reading

Bullpen Theater (6:30pm to 7:00pm)
Moderator: Nathan Rueckert (The Baseball Seams Company; Sioux Falls, South Dakota)

America at the Seams: Poetry and Stories
Ethan Bryan (The Baseball Seams Company; Springfield, Missouri)

Ode to Lost Yards: A Poetic Presentation
Thomas ‘Porky’ McDonald (Queens, New York)


Session 27: Movie Night at the Hall

Bullpen Theater (7:00pm to 8:45pm)
Host: Jim Gates (National Baseball Hall of Fame; Cooperstown, New York)

Pastime (Miramax, 1991)

The story of a major miracle in the minor leagues, circa 1957. Showing includes a contest to see if you are paying attention.

Cooperstown Symposium Registration/Information Table

The Registration/Information table for the Cooperstown Symposium is located in the Library Atrium and will be open during these hours:

Wednesday: 10:00am to 5:00pm
Thursday: 8:15am to 5:00pm
Friday: 8:15am to 5:00pm


Giamatti Research Center

The Giamatti Research Center will be closed to library patrons for the duration of the Cooperstown Symposium. This facility will serve as a break room and social center for Symposium participants.
A light breakfast will be served on Thursday and Friday, beginning at 8:15am. Please use the library entrance on Fair Street before 9:00am as the museum will not be open until that time.

Light snacks and beverages will also be available throughout the day.

The Giamatti Center will be open during these hours:
Wednesday: 2:00pm to 5:00pm
Thursday: 8:15am to 5:00pm
Friday: 8:15am to 5:00pm

Please do not bring food or beverages into the museum exhibition areas.

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