A Pitcher, A President and a Home Movie

In November 2013 the Pennsylvania State Archives was contacted by Mrs. Judith Savastio regarding a home movie that her father filmed. She had questions about preserving the film and was interested in finding a repository for its permanent care. Mrs. Savastio’s father, Major League Baseball pitcher James “Jimmie” DeShong (1909-1993), shot the film on his new 8mm home movie...
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Philadelphia’s Mr. Baseball and His Amazing Athletics

Connie Mack always seemed to be dressed in black. His three­-piece business suit, complete with necktie, detach­able collar and derby, gave him the appearance of a Philadel­phia funeral director rather than baseball manager. But for the ten years he had guided the hometown Athletics, Mack took his job very seriously. To be sure, on this sunny Sep­tember morning in 1911, the game of baseball had...
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Pride of the Philadelphia Phillies: An Interview with Mike Schmidt

Baseball is, essentially, a game of history. In no other sport can athletes measure their performance with such precision against those who have come before. Every aspect of the game is recorded, from most base hits to lowest earned run average. As time passes, players’ evaluations and rankings increasingly come to rest on the statistics they compiled during their careers. While nearly...
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Currents

White Elephants Baseball historians generally consider Connie Mack (1862-1956) the paragon of managers. His knowledge of the game, professional disposition, and ability to acquire and, more importantly, manage players captured the attention of sports enthusiasts during a time when the national pastime was riddled with scandal, permeated with intemperance, and punctuated by rowdyism. Connie Mack...
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PHMC Highlights

The orientation video at the Pennsylvania Military Museum, Boalsburg, Centre County, recently garnered two prestigious national awards. Answering the Call: Pennsylvanians in Service to the Nation won a Telly Award in the twenty-seventh annual competition conducted in 2006, and first place in the National Association of Government Communicators Blue Pencil/Gold Screen Award for exceptional...
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Christy Mathewson: Baseball’s Gentleman and Tragic Hero

On Wednesday, September 23, 1908, twenty thousand baseball fans packed New York City’s Polo Grounds to watch the hometown New York Giants host the reigning World Series champion and archrival, the Chicago Cubs. The contest would determine first place in the race for the coveted National League pennant. Right-handed pitcher Christy “Matty” Mathewson (1880–1925), a thirty-seven-game winner, took...
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Hotel Washington

An unsigned postcard of the Hotel Washington in Chambersburg sent to Roland G. Smith at the Ligonier Motor and Machine Company in Ligonier, Westmoreland County, was postmarked October 19, 1913, nearly fifty years after Confederate forces decimated the Franklin County seat on July 30, 1864. Southern soldiers destroyed 550 buildings and structures in Chambersburg in addition to looting houses and...
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Hotel Fauchere

Born in Vevey, Switzerland, Louis Fauchére (1823-1893) began his apprenticeship as a cook at the age of fifteen, after which he was employed by prestigious hotels in his native country. In 1846 he married Rosalie Perrochet, with whom he had one daughter, Marie, born two years later. The family immigrated to the United States in 1851 and Fauchére found employment as a master chef at New...
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