Wednesday, June 17, 2009
Baseball Museum 5: Negro Leagues Baseball Museum
Since the Negro Leagues Museum did not open until 12pm on Sunday and we had the afternoon game that day (June 14, 2009), instead of going before the game, we ended up going to it after the Kansas City Royals game. We got there around 4:30pm and it closed at 6pm. It worked out to be just about enough time to see it, but barely. At least it did work out and we did not miss it entirely because it was worth seeing.
The exhibit is mostly a timeline history of colored people playing baseball. Of course, the main focus is on the Negro Leagues, but it follows the history from the 1800s through to African Americans beginning to be allowed into the MLB and causing the downfall of the Negro Leagues. The exhibits have a lot of information and a good amount of artfacts and such.
For the most part the images and things display make sense and are explained by nearby signs. However, quite a few items seem interesting, but have absolutely nothing to explain their significance. It seems they have stuffed too much stuff in this small exhibit and ran out of space to put signs to explain some of the things, which is a shame because some of the cooler looking things seem entirely insignificant because they have nothing identifying them.
At the end of the time line history there is several rows of lockers. The lockers are like a sort of Negro Leagues Hall of Fame, although I am not positive they call it that. Most lockers have the uniform of the player and a plaque telling about their contribution to professional baseball. There is also a display of baseballs signed by people that played in the Negro Leagues including many on Negro Leagues Museum balls, which were signed specifically to be in the museum.
Overall this was a great museum to visit. There is so much packed into it that it really does take some time to get through. I know we did not even really see it all even because we were kind of rushing to get done before 6pm and get some things at the gift shop. Mik even liked the little theater they had with a documentary playing.