Archives and Manuscript Collection

The National Baseball Hall of Fame Library archive collections contain a variety of material, including the papers of individuals, records of organizations, scrapbooks, consciously assembled collections of unique material, along with Hall of Fame created ephemera collections.  These collections range in size from a few documents to hundreds of boxes.  Many of these are fully described by records in ABNER, our online library catalog.  These records include a summary description, and often include links to a more detailed Archival Finding Aid

Researchers are encouraged to conduct a thorough review of ABNER prior to making an appointment.   Two weeks advance notice is preferred for any research visit.           

Findings Aids have been created for a number of the archive collections.  These documents provide detailed information on the contents of larger collections.              

Research inquiries may be directed to the Giamatti Research Center as follows: 

Email: research [at] baseballhall [dot] org
Telephone: 607-547-0330 or 0335

Inquiries regarding the organization and description of the Archive Collections may be addressed to:  

Email: cscrafford [at] baseballhall [dot] org
Telephone: 607-547-0371
US Mail: Claudette Scrafford
  National Baseball Hall of Fame
  25 Main Street
  Cooperstown, NY 13326


Here is a partial list of original collections held in the archive: 

August Herrmann Papers

August “Garry” Herrmann was president of the Cincinnati Reds and chairman of the National Commission during the years 1902-1927.  Herrmann’s papers include correspondence, newspaper articles, contracts, ledgers, maps, blueprints, drawings, and ephemera that offer insight into the operations of an early twentieth-century baseball club and the first ruling government of baseball. 

Gene Mack Cartoons

Gene Mack was a noted cartoonist for the Boston Globe from 1927 to 1950.  This archive contains many of his original drawings. 

Roger Kahn Papers

Roger Kahn ranks among baseball’s most prolific and popular authors.  This archive includes personal and professional correspondence, contracts, litigation documents, fan mail, newspaper articles and photos covering the period 1936 to 2004. 

Federal League Litigation

This is a collection of correspondence, agreements, court transcripts, affidavits and newspaper clippings relating to the Federal League antitrust litigation between 1914 and 1925. 

Scorebooks and Scorecards

Ranging from the Oshkosh Base Ball Club in 1886, to the present day, this archive contains a variety of scorebooks kept by Edward Murphy, Sid Mercer, and Tom Meany.  The scorecards are divided into eight series (major league, minor league, Negro leagues, military and wartime, New York Yankees, All-Star and World Series, amateur, and oversized) and include hundreds of individual games. 


Hundreds of individual scrapbooks have been fully processed and are available to researchers.  Many of these artifacts include newspaper clippings, but they may also contain photographs and other ephemera.  Examples of this collection include the Mickey Mantle series, Effa Manley’s personal scrapbook, the Japan Goodwill tour series, and the Vivian Kellogg AAGPBL collection. 


Ephemera is material produced for a one-time, limited purpose use and can be understood generally as transient documents of everyday life.  The category of ephemera covers a wide variety of material, and can include: lineup cards, lithographs, posters, press passes, decals, newspapers, schedules, etc. 

Original documents, photographs, and recordings are stored under state-of-the-art archival conditions designed to perpetuate the life of the collections.  In accordance with contemporary standards on the handling of artifacts, our staff may impose certain restrictions on the use of material by researchers. 

Donation of collections and individual items to the library are encouraged, and a Library Acquisitions Committee meets frequently to assess proposals.  Inquires regarding the donation of library related material may be directed to the Giamatti Research Center using the contact information provided above.