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Baseball Archaeology: Artifacts of the Great American Pastime

Baseball Archaeology: Artifacts of the Great American Pastime

by Gwen Aldridge, Bret Wills (Photographer)

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
This handsome collection of baseball artifacts from 1880 onward is a treat for the baseball aficionado. A focus on equipment explains, for instance, that early gloves ``were not used for catching, but to stop the ball with the least amount of pain possible.'' Most equipment surprisingly doesn't change much: the 1885 catcher's mask is remarkably similar to the 1988 model. The baseball itself evolves from a nonresilient ``deadball'' to a springier ``rabbit ball.'' There are profiles of bygone leagues, including the Negro Leagues, and a sidebar on Moe Berg, the legendary intellectual but weak-hitting catcher whose spy activities won him the Medal of Freedom. There are, however, several miscues. The author says that New York's Polo Grounds ``at its peak'' held approximately 34,000 fans, whereas the real number was closer to 55,000. A pennant is said to belong to the ``1958 Brooklyn Dodgers,'' while 1958 was the Dodgers' first year in Los Angeles. Aside from these errors, this is indeed a welcome dig into baseball's colorful past. Aldridge is a creative director for an advertising agency and Wills is an advertising photographer. (Sept.)
School Library Journal
YA-This inviting volume begs to be opened. The concise text is clear, readable, and informative, while the photographs of baseball paraphernalia more than describe America's love affair with the sport. The text chronologically covers many aspects of the game, such as its creation, the evolution of the ball, various fields, assorted players, and other bits of information, important and trivial. Wills's photos of articles from the Baseball Hall of Fame and other collections of memorabilia are almost three-dimensional in their clarity and are full of texture. Old shoes, shirts, pennants, cards, bats, balls, and gloves never looked this good or this interesting. A great addition to any collection, for hard-core fans as well as those readers who thought they could care less.-Susan H. Woodcock, King's Park Library, Burke, VA

Product Details

Chronicle Books LLC
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
10.40(w) x 9.91(h) x 0.63(d)

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