Baseball teams play half their schedules on the road.
Now the Baseball Hall of Fame is doing the same.
It’s sending a photo exhibit on a three-year, four-city road trip that started Thursday at the Long Island Museum in Stony Brook, NY.
It will remain on display through Oct. 15, when baseball will be involved in playoffs leading to the World Series. Future stops for the 51-picture exhibit are Dubuque, Iowa; Greenville, SC
; and Laurel, MS over the next three years.
Its title is more than a mouthful: “Picturing America’s Pastime: A Snapshot of the Photograph Collection at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.”
Photos in the traveling road show represent a small fraction of the approximately 750,000 images in the archives of the museum, which officially opened its doors on June 12, 1939.
Both black-and-white and color images are included, as well as sepia, with works spanning a time-frame that began with the birth of the game – and the birth of the camera – in the 19th century.
Among the photographers represented are Charles M. Conlon, Carl J. Horner, William C. Greene, Brad Mangin, and Arthur Rothstein (no relation to the gambler allegedly involved in the 1919 Black Sox Scandal).
As in the actual museum in Cooperstown, NY, the exhibit links two American passions: baseball and photography.
After leaving the Long Island Museum, the photo exhibit will move to the Dubuque Museum of Art next year, and both the Upcountry History Museum at Furman University in Greenville and the Lauren Rogers Museum of Art in Mississippi in 2025.
Copies of famous baseball photographs may be purchased at the Hall of Fame’s gift shop or online. In addition, many volumes of baseball books for sale in Cooperstown contain some of the same photographs on display in the traveling exhibit.
A non-profit institution that relies acquires its artifacts by donation rather than purchase, the Hall of Fame has 342 elected members, including Class of 2023 inductees Fred McGriff and Scott Rolen.
Inductions will be held at the Clark Sports Center, about a mile from the museum, on Sunday, July 23. Admission to the Hall of Fame is highest honor a baseball personality can achieve.