Baseball has long been considered America’s pastime, so much that The Library of Congress has put together an exhibit called “Baseball Americana.” This exhibit focuses on the history of baseball all over the United States. The exhibit will “explore baseball’s gritty roots, its changing traditions and the game today. It is a story the nation’s library can uniquely tell, showcasing items that cannot be found anywhere else” according to Brett Zongker of the Library of Congress. This exhibit is split into five sections: Origins and Early Days, Who’s Playing?, At the Ballpark, The Promise of Baseball, and The Art and Science of Baseball.
“Origins and Early Days” will feature the development of baseball from its early forms, when Massachusetts Town Ball and the New York Game battled for supremacy, to the game we know today. “Who’s Playing?” will encompass the variety of participants and the diverse array of ball clubs that ruled the sandlot, barnstormed the country or occupied magnificent stadiums. An integral piece of this story will be that of the players who have fought for the right to play as equals regardless of their race, ethnicity or gender. “At the Ballpark” will examine traditions and changes in the architecture and accouterments of baseball, fan interaction, music and media coverage. “The Promise of Baseball” will explore the many ways that the sport gave poor players a path out of poverty and new immigrants access and the ability to help shape American culture, as well as the economics and business of baseball and how the game has been used for diplomacy beyond U.S. borders. “The Art and Science of Baseball” considers the constant and changing views of mastering the game, building a team, getting an edge, tracking statistics and the art of winning.
“Baseball Americana” will be on view in the Library’s Thomas Jefferson Building, 10 First St. S.E., Washington, D.C. The exhibition will be free and open to the public Monday through Saturday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. from now through Summer of 2019.
For those who can’t make it to the Library of Congress, the exhibit is on their website. You can explore different photographs and artifacts, some of which date all the way back to 1786! You can visit the online exhibition here!
Source: Library of Congress to Open Major Exhibition on Baseball in Summer 2018 by Brett Zongker