Pieces of Our Past: May Week 1
The 1948 World Series Was Highlighted by Sportsmanship, Championship Game Victory for Lock Haven, Pa.
Every Little League Baseball World Series game has its highlights and many of them are available to view at the Peter J. McGovern Little League Museum.
The reporters covering the 1948 Little League World Series were quick to recognize the sportsmanship displayed by a Joe Cardamone from Lock Haven, Pa. Whenever an opposing player crossed the plate to score a run, the stocky catcher whipped off his catcher’s mask and vigorously shook the base runner’s hand.
That camaraderie will be forever be remembered in Little League World Series lore, because it is included in video highlights of the game and viewed by thousands of patrons each year.
In that championship game, Lock Haven defeated a team from St. Petersburg, Fla., 6-5.
In 1948, the crowd doubled in size from the year before, and the United States Rubber Company, the parent company of Keds, became the first World Series sponsor. With its $5,000 contribution, U.S. Rubber also had naming rights, so that year the Little League Baseball World Series, which also featured teams from Vermont, Connecticut, Florida and Pennsylvania, went by the moniker - Keds National Little League Tournament.
During the ’48 World Series, a second player also was immortalized.
Frank Rybczyk of Middletown, Conn., was known by his teammates as “Murphy.” Sportswriters, however, smitten with his oversized pants, called him “the uniform that walks like a boy.”
The highlights exhibit is in the World Series Room of the Museum and has footage from many of the games starting in 1948, the first year they were recorded, through 2008. The exhibit is updated annually.
The Museum is located at 525 Route 15 Highway, just south of Williamsport, and is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday and by group appointment from Labor Day through Memorial Day. Its summer season begins after Memorial Day and the Museum is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Monday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday through June 31. From July 1 through Labor Day, the Museum is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday. The facility is accessible to the disabled. A cell phone audio tour is available.
Rates are $5 for adults; $3 for those 62 and older; $1.50 for children between the ages of 5 and 13. There is no fee for children 4 or younger. Group rates and tours are available. The Museum also offers birthday parties and after-hours facility rentals.
The Museum is closed on Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Days.
For more information, call the museum at (570) 326-3607; or visit http://www.LittleLeague.org/Learn_More/museum.htm.