Baseball and Genealogy

I grew up as one of three sisters with no surviving brothers. My Dad was a baseball fan and he took his daughters to baseball games. I remember outdoor baseball at Metropolitan Stadium in Bloomington, a suburb of Minneapolis, Minnesota. Some of those players I watched are now in the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York. Next week I will be visiting the Hall of Fame — in fact I will be in Cooperstown this weekend for the annual induction ceremonies courtesy of a friend who lives in the town.

Today I am scrambling on the last day of research at the New England Historic Genealogical Society in Boston, Massachusetts before heading to Cooperstown. I had the good fortune to run into someone I haven’t seen in years — Robert Charles Anderson. Many of you may recognize his name as author of the NEHGS series The Great Migration.

Bob is also a baseball lover. Years ago he wrote a wonderful article on “Baseball Genealogy” in the quarterly of the Association of Professional Genealogists (Vol. 6, Fall 1991, page 59). I had missed his more recent article on “The Family of Asa Brainerd (1840-1888), Pioneer Professional Baseball Player” that was published in the New York Genealogical and Biographical Record (Vol. 138, 2007, pages 5-13). For anyone who wants some additional ideas on research techniques involving a family involved in baseball, you might want to check this article. Bob uses sound genealogical methodology in his quest for the correct story of the life and ancestry of Asa Brainerd. Part of Bob’s work showed that previous articles and biographical material on Asa were incorrect. Authors and editors had copied from each other without verifying the details. It’s like copying someone’s online or published family tree without verifying the names, dates, places, and other info.

© 2009, Paula Stuart-Warren. All rights reserved.

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2 comments on “Baseball and Genealogy

  1. Paula

    I grew up about 90 miles away from Cooperstown and still love going back there – it is my ideal small upstate NY town. In fact I may stop over there on my next visit home this fall!

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