Sports Research Center

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The Sports Research Center on the fifth floor of the Louis Stokes Wing showcases the best of Cleveland sports history all in one convenient location. The Center houses more than 25,000 books, magazines and primary research materials, including archival photos, scrapbooks, autographs, clippings, oral history recordings, correspondence and more. The Center is free and open to the public year-round.
Click here to see selections from the Mears/Murdock Collection on the History of Baseball in Cleveland Public Library’s online Digital Gallery.

Additional resources available on this page are the Cleveland Sports Icon Interviews conducted by Dan Coughlin and League Park Legacy in collaboration with the Baseball Heritage Museum.

Sports Icon Interview Series

The Sports Icon Interview Series is an oral history project designed to preserve the history of the people who made Cleveland sports great. Dan Coughlin (long-time Cleveland journalist, sportscaster, and icon in his own right) conducted the interviews in his inimitable style, allowing the icons to tell their stories in their own words.

Click on the names below to display their brief biography and a link to the audio of their interview.

Cleveland Sports Icons


League Park Legacy

Baseball history comes alive at Cleveland’s historical ballpark, League Park, located on Lexington Avenue between E 66th and E 70th Streets in the Hough neighborhood. Built in 1891 and also known as Dunn Field at one time, League Park is “baseball’s oldest existing Major League ball grounds.” The restored Ticket House (seen in the lower left in the aerial view below) is home to the Baseball Heritage Museum.
Team names have changed during the history of professional baseball at League Park. Hometown players are identified by the following, depending on which team name they played under:


Cleveland
Spiders

1889-1899
Cleveland Bluebirds logo courtesy of SportsLogos.net
Cleveland
Bluebirds

1901-1902
Cleveland Naps logo courtesy of SportsLogos.net
Cleveland
Naps

1903-1914
Cleveland Indians logo courtesy of SportsLogos.net
Cleveland
Indians

1915-present
ClevelandBuckeyesLogo
Cleveland Buckeyes
Negro American League
1943-1948, 1950

Click below on the numbered positions on the aerial view of League Park or on the years listed below to learn more about the people and events that made history at Cleveland’s historic field:
| 1891 | 1895 | 1909 | 1914 | 1920 | 1929 | 1945 | 2014 |
League Park Today

1-Quincy Trouppe Babe Ruth Joe Dimaggio Mel Harder Lou Gehrig Napoleon Lajoie Bill Wambsganss Ray Chapman Joe Sewell Bill Bradley "Cy" Young Addie Joss Alta Weiss Bob Feller Elmer Smith Earl Averill "Tris" Speaker Sam Jethroe "Shoeless" Joe Jackson

To view an image of the current League Park superimposed over a black-and-white photo of the League Park of the past, click here. This provides a visual reminder of how the new fence and refurbished Ticket House relate to the original structure. The view is from the corner of East 66th and Lexington Avenue looking east down Lexington.

Photo credits: Photograph Collection, Cleveland Public Library, except: Cleveland Aerial Media, City Architecture (League Park today); The Cleveland Press Collection, Michael Schwartz Library, Cleveland State University (Ruth and Gehrig at League Park, 1927); Raymond Hisrich, Ragersville Historical Society (Alta Weiss, 1907); Library of Congress, Prints & Photographs Division, Detroit Publishing Company Collection. (League Park, Cleveland, Ohio, between 1900 and 1910).