Two longtime American institutions – NBC’s Today show, which began in 1952, and the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum – highlighted an exciting start to the national pastime’s famed Induction Weekend in Cooperstown on Thursday.
“Today I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of the Earth.”
On July 4, 1939, Lou Gehrig uttered those words as part of his “Luckiest Man” speech at Yankee Stadium. Just two weeks before, on June 19, Gehrig had been dealt a devastating blow when he was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.
“I might have been given a bad break, but I’ve got an awful lot to live for,” Gehrig said at the end of his speech.
Pat O’Conner brought with him three decades of professional baseball experience with him when he recently spoke to the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum’s 2014 Class of Frank and Peggy Steele interns. And in 30 more years, he expects many of those interns to be enjoying a life in professional baseball – just as he has.
On the back cover of the recently-published book, Mookie: Life, Baseball, and the ’86 Mets, former pitcher Ron Darling writes, “One of my favorite teammates – a class act, an even better person than the great ballplayer he was. Mookie was the moral rudder wherever he went.”
A day after the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum celebrated its 75th birthday, the Cooperstown institution reached into the game’s past for a new exhibit of one of the game’s all-time greats while embracing new technology in order to share the history of the sport with the world.
Seventy-five years to the day after a beloved Cooperstown institution devoted to the National Pastime officially opened its doors for the first time and held its first-ever induction ceremony, Cooperstown celebrated again.
While Bob Tufts’ Ivy League education may have made him unique among his big league teammates, he fit in perfectly with the crowd assembled for this week’s 26th Annual Symposium on Baseball and American Culture held at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.
The 26th Annual Symposium on Baseball and American Culture got under way on Wednesday with presentation from internationally known architect and urban planner Janet Marie Smith, the three-day event’s keynote speaker for an audience filled with lovers of the National Pastime.
Co-sponsored by the State University of New York College at Oneonta and the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, the symposium and its more than 200 representatives abd 60 presentations examines the impact of baseball on American culture from inter- and multi-disciplinary perspectives.
Though Mother Nature’s fickle behavior turned a pleasant spring afternoon into a water-soaked deluge, both players and fans enjoyed the Cooperstown experience on Saturday.