Baseball Hall of Fame Celebrates Black History Month

Salute to African Americans in Baseball Feb. 21-25 in Cooperstown

February 14, 2011
A film about Satchel Paige will be shown during the Hall of Fame's Black History Month Celebration. (National Baseball Hall of Fame Library)

The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum will host a week's worth of programs celebrating Black History Month Feb. 21-25 in Cooperstown.

Visitors to the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum can participate in a variety of daily programs, including artifact spotlights highlighting items in the collection from stars of the Negro leagues, films that feature the stories of Buck O'Neil, Satchel Paige and other legends who played the game before the major leagues were integrated and even a walkthrough of the Museum's Pride and Passion exhibit with a Hall of Fame curator.

In total, 35 Negro leaguers have been elected to the Hall of Fame since 1971. Programs offer the perfect complement to the Hall of Fame experience for families and school children during the Presidents' Week break.

All programs are included with a Museum admission, and no reservations are required. Programs include:

11 a.m. Artifact Spotlight: Remembering the Negro leagues

Daily Education Gallery, 3rd Floor

1 p.m. Wed. A special look back at the Negro Leagues, using artifacts from the Hall of Fame's collection.

1 p.m. Bullpen Film Series: There Was Always Sun Shining Someplace

Monday Bullpen Theater, 1st Floor

This compelling film chronicles the rich history of the Negro Baseball Leagues that flourished before Jackie Robinson integrated the major leagues in 1947. Featuring interviews with baseball Hall of Famers, Satchel Paige, James Cool Papa Bell, Buck Leonard, Judy Johnson, Monte Irvin and Ray Dandridge, There Was Always Sun Shining Someplace contains rare historical footage showing the ballplayers as they traveled the back roads of America, The Caribbean, Mexico and Latin America.

1 p.m. Bullpen Film Series: Buck O'Neil and Black Baseball in Chicago

Tuesday Bullpen Theater, 1st Floor

This film offers a unique look at the early days of local minority baseball, much of it through the eyes of Buck O'Neil, the one-time Negro League legend. Produced by the Chicago Baseball Museum, the film recognizes the impact and significance of O'Neil and the Negro Leagues over the years and brings these contributions to light.

11 a.m. Curator Spotlight: Pride and Passion

Wednesday Hall of Fame, 2nd Floor

This guided walkthrough experience of the Museum's Pride and Passion exhibit with a Hall of Fame curator lasts between 30 and 45 minutes.

1 p.m. Bullpen Film Series: Pitching Man: Satchel Paige Defying Time

Thursday Bullpen Theater, 1st Floor

Satchel Paige Defying Time is a compelling documentary narrated by actor Billy Dee Williams. Over a decade in the making, this film pays homage to a remarkable athlete. Paige was the single most important player in the old Negro leagues and an American legend. He was an extraordinary athlete and a genuine original who played the game for forty years on makeshift rural sandlots and in major league ballparks against the best in the game.

For more information on these and other programs, please visit www.baseballhall.org.

The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum is open seven days a week year round, with the exception of Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Day. The Museum observes regular hours of 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. from Labor Day until Memorial Day Weekend. From Memorial Day through the day before Labor Day, the Museum is open from 9 a.m. until 9 p.m. seven days a week. Ticket prices are $19.50 for adults (13 and over), $12 for seniors (65 and over) and for those holding current memberships in the VFW, Disabled American Veterans, American Legion and AMVets organizations, and $7 for juniors (ages 7-12). Members are always admitted free of charge and there is no charge for children 6 years of age or younger. For more information, visit our Web site at baseballhall.org or call 888-HALL-OF-FAME (888-425-5633) or 607-547-7200.