Roots-Reconnecting with Our Past travel blog

Bill with the Negro League

Bill and Babe Ruth

Bill in Dodger Heaven


9/18/2014. Thursday. No Curve Balls Today!

We got a late start this morning and didn't get into Cooperstown until around 11:30. Our first stop had to be at the National Baseball Museum and Hall of Fame. The museum consists of 3 floors with each floor high lightening a different part of the game: the first floor had all the engraved plaques of the Hall of Famers with their likeness embossed on the plaque and the pertinent info of the players' careers; the second floor highlighted the greats like Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig and other old time players and the third floor contained exhibits of Hank Aaron, pictures of old ball parks and memorabilia like the cow bell Sadie rang at the Brooklyn Dodger games, the Philly Phanatic costume and other stuff like who holds what record for each particular parr of the game. They even had a t-shirt on display of a guy who went to 30 different ball games in all 30 baseball stadiums in 37 days; he had sewn onto the back of the shirt each game he attended and what ballpark!

All the exhibits contained the actual uniforms, gloves, shoes, hats, contracts, news clippings, etc from ball players from the mid 1800's to the present. This is definitely the Mecca for an avid baseball fan. Everything about the game is here and represented by artifacts.

We took a break after seeing most of the first floor we were on and decided to have lunch. We went to The Pit which is a restaurant in the cellar of a big building. Anita had the turkey salad sandwich that had sliced fresh turkey, cranberries, mayo, chopped walnuts and a pumpkin mash and I had their cheeseburger with fries. Both lunches were fantastic.

I was going to return to the museum and finish all the floors and Anita decided she wanted to walk around Cooperstown and take pictures. After I finished two floors, I went down to the Hall of Fame room that had all the plaques on display. Over 15,000 men played in the major leagues and only 1500 made the Hall of Fame; I read all 1500 plaques! Not all plaques were of players; some plaques represented umpires, managers and owners of teams who made great contributions to the game. It took 4 hours for me to cover the museum and it was a ball ( pun intended)!

Since Cooperstown is a small and quaint village ( refer to yesterday's geography lesson), Anita was able to walk the entire village. After I finished the museum, she took me on a driving tour to point out the magnificent old homes and hotels and some of the other places we will visit on Friday. I suppose we will tour a farm museum, the Fly Creek Cider Mill and orchard and the Ommegang Brewery known for their Belgian style brewing. I, however, plan on having lunch at the Cooperstown Diner and dinner at the Tosca Italian Restaurant.

Cooperstown is situated in the foothills of the Adirondacks and sits on lake Otsego. This is a picturesque little village ( just testing you) and has some great little shops. There is, however, an abundance of shops selling baseball stuff.

Judge William Cooper, father of noted author James Fenimore Cooper, purchased the land of present day Cooperstown in 1785 and became the village in 1786. So, the village has been around awhile.

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