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A comprehensive, non-partisan account of the judicial proceedings spawned by the corruption of the 1919 World Series is badly needed. This book provides it. The narrative of events has been crafted from surviving fragments of the judicial record, contemporaneous newspaper accounts of the proceedings, museum archives and, occasionally, the literature of the Black Sox scandal. Preceding the account of judicial events are a brief overview of the baseball gambling problem, a summary of the 1919 Series, and a discussion of post-Series events that presaged revelations of the Series fix. The grand jury proceedings, the criminal trial, and ensuing civil suits initiated by various of the banned players against the White Sox are then recounted in detail, accompanied by copious source citations. The book concludes with a survey of how Black Sox-related legal proceedings have been treated in scandal literature. The book does not purport to be the definitive account of the Black Sox scandal. Rather, it uniquely presents how the matter played out in court.
Schooled on the sandlots of Milwaukee, Chicago Black Sox center fielder Oscar “Happy” Felsch (1891–1964) was a rising star who then blew a promising career for a few bucks by participating in the throwing of the 1919 World Series. On the field, Felsch was hitting his peak in 1920, the year the scandal hit the newspapers. His speed, run-producing power and defensive prowess—all attributes that might have garnered consideration by the Hall of Fame—earned comparisons to the great Tris Speaker. Instead, he ended up playing the fallen hero for remote baseball enclaves in Montana and Canada. Did he really play to lose the series or just say that he did out of fear of reprisal by crooked gamblers? Felsch talked about the scandal more than any of the other eight banned players. This book analyzes his three interviews, revealing his ultimate gullibility and greed and rampant contradictions.
The Black Sox Scandal is a cold case, not a closed case. When Eliot Asinof wrote his classic history about the fixing of the 1919 World Series, Eight Men Out, he told a dramatic story of undereducated and underpaid Chicago White Sox ballplayers, disgruntled by their low pay and poor treatment by team management, who fell prey to the wiles of double-crossing big-city gamblers offering them bribes to lose the World Series to the Cincinnati Reds. Shoeless Joe Jackson, Buck Weaver, Eddie Cicotte, and the other Black Sox players were all banned from organized baseball for life. But the real story is a lot more complex. We now have access to crucial information that changes what we thought we knew about “baseball’s darkest hour” — including rare film footage from that fateful fall classic, legal documents from the criminal and civil court proceedings, and accurate salary information for major-league players and teams. All of these new pieces to the Black Sox puzzle provide definitive answers to some old mysteries and raise other questions in their place. However, the Black Sox Scandal isn’t the only story worth telling about the 1919 Chicago White Sox. The team roster included three future Hall of Famers, a 20-year-old spitballer who would go on to win 300 games in the minor leagues, and even a batboy who later became a celebrity with the “Murderers’ Row” New York Yankees in the 1920s. All of their stories are included in Scandal on the South Side, which has full-life biographies on each of the 31 players who made an appearance for the White Sox in 1919, plus a comprehensive recap of Chicago’s pennant-winning season, the tainted World Series, and the sordid aftermath. This book isn’t a rewriting of Eight Men Out, but it is the complete story of everyone associated with the 1919 Chicago White Sox. The Society for American Baseball Research invites you to learn more about the Black Sox Scandal and the infamous team at the center of it all. With contributions from Adrian Marcewicz, Andy Sturgill, Brian Cooper, Brian McKenna, Brian Stevens, Bruce Allardice, Dan Lindner, Daniel Ginsburg, David Fleitz, David Fletcher, Gregory H. Wolf, Irv Goldfarb, Jack Morris, Jacob Pomrenke, James E. Elfers, James R. Nitz, Jim Sandoval, John Heeg, Kelly Boyer Sagert and Rod Nelson, Lyle Spatz, Paul Mittermeyer, Peter Morris, Richard Smiley, Rick Huhn, Russell Arent, Steve Cardullo, Steve Steinberg, Steven G. McPherson, and William F. Lamb. Table of Contents: 1. Introduction, by Jacob Pomrenke 2. Prologue: Offseason 1918-19, by Jacob Pomrenke 3. Joe Benz, by William F. Lamb 4. Eddie Cicotte, by Jim Sandoval 5. Eddie Collins, by Paul Mittermeyer 6. Shano Collins, by Andy Sturgill 7. Dave Danforth, by Steve Steinberg 8. Red Faber, by Brian Cooper 9. Season Timeline: April 1919 10. Happy Felsch, by James R. Nitz 11. Chick Gandil, by Daniel Ginsburg 12. Joe Jackson, by David Fleitz 13. Bill James, by Steven G. McPherson 14. Joe Jenkins, by Jacob Pomrenke 15. Dickey Kerr, by Adrian Marcewicz 16. Season Timeline: May 1919 17. Nemo Leibold, by Gregory H. Wolf 18. Grover Lowdermilk, by James E. Elfers 19. Byrd Lynn, by Russell Arent 20. Erskine Mayer, by Lyle Spatz 21. Hervey McClellan, by Jack Morris 22. Tom McGuire, by Jack Morris 23. Season Timeline: June 1919 24. Fred McMullin, by Jacob Pomrenke 25. Eddie Murphy, by John Heeg 26. Win Noyes, by Bruce Allardice 27. Pat Ragan, by Andy Sturgill 28. Swede Risberg, by Kelly Boyer Sagert and Rod Nelson 29. Charlie Robertson, by Jacob Pomrenke 30. Season Timeline: July 1919 31. Reb Russell, by Richard Smiley 32. Ray Schalk, by Brian Stevens 33. Frank Shellenback, by Brian McKenna 34. John Sullivan, by Jacob Pomrenke 35. Buck Weaver, by David Fletcher 36. Roy Wilkinson, by William F. Lamb 37. Season Timeline: August 1919 38. Lefty Williams, by Jacob Pomrenke 39. Owner: Charles Comiskey, by Irv Goldfarb 40. Manager: Kid Gleason, by Dan Lindner 41. General Manager: Harry Grabiner, by Steve Cardullo 42. Executive: Tip O’Neill, by Brian McKenna 43. Batboy: Eddie Bennett, by Peter Morris 44. Season Timeline: September 1919 45. Walking Off to the World Series, by Jacob Pomrenke 46. The 1919 World Series: A Recap, by Rick Huhn 47. The Pitching Depth Dilemma, by Jacob Pomrenke 48. 1919 American League Salaries, by Jacob Pomrenke 49. The Black Sox Scandal, by William F. Lamb 50. Epilogue: Offseason 1919-20, by Jacob Pomrenke
Jesse Owens wins four gold medals at the 1936 Olympics. Billie Jean King takes on Bobby Riggs in the Battle of the Sexes. Title IX is passed. Some moments in sports—whether they take place on a track, on a tennis court, or in a courtroom—transcend the event itself. Some have helped America live out its creed that all men are created equal. Others have pushed the nation toward gender equality. Others have changed individual sports to such a degree that they have transformed society. Powerful Moments in Sports: The Most Significant Sporting Events in American History encompasses more than a single player, team, or game. This book looks at how a particular event revolutionized a sport, how a contest of speed inspired a nation, or even how a humble victory affected the world. Martin Gitlin considers such impactful moments as Jackie Robinson’s integration of Major League Baseball, Gertrude Ederle becoming the first female to swim the English Channel—and shattering the times of five men who had accomplished the feat before her—and the underdog US hockey team defeating the Soviets at the 1980 Olympics. The twenty events featured in this book had profound social, political, and cultural importance and inspired athletes and spectators alike. Spanning multiple decades, Powerful Moments in Sports reveals the tremendous impact athletes have had on America—and the world—over the years. Covering football, baseball, hockey, basketball, track and field, boxing, and more, this book will fascinate and enlighten sports fans, historians, and those interested in the impact of athletic endeavors on culture and society.
Describes some of the most famous crimes and court trials in the United States from 1919 to 2004, including cases involving John Scopes, Alger Hiss, Ted Bundy, O.J. Simpson, and Scott Peterson.
In the most famous scandal of sports history, eight Chicago White Sox players--including Shoeless Joe Jackson--agreed to throw the 1919 World Series to the Cincinnati Reds in exchange for the promise of $20,000 each from gamblers reportedly working for New York mobster Arnold Rothstein. Heavily favored, Chicago lost the Series five games to three. Although rumors of a fix flew while the series was being played, they were largely disregarded by players and the public at large. It wasn't until a year later that a general investigation into baseball gambling reopened the case, and a nationwide scandal emerged. In this book, Charles Fountain offers a full and engaging history of one of baseball's true moments of crisis and hand-wringing, and shows how the scandal changed the way American baseball was both managed and perceived. After an extensive investigation and a trial that became a national morality play, the jury returned not-guilty verdicts for all of the White Sox players in August of 1921. The following day, Judge Kennesaw Mountain Landis, baseball's new commissioner, "regardless of the verdicts of juries," banned the eight players for life. And thus the Black Sox entered into American mythology. Guilty or innocent? Guilty and innocent? The country wasn't sure in 1921, and as Fountain shows, we still aren't sure today. But we are continually pulled to the story, because so much of modern sport, and our attitude towards it, springs from the scandal. Fountain traces the Black Sox story from its roots in the gambling culture that pervaded the game in the years surrounding World War I, through the confusing events of the 1919 World Series itself, to the noisy aftermath and trial, and illuminates the moment as baseball's tipping point. Despite the clumsy unfolding of the scandal and trial and the callous treatment of the players involved, the Black Sox saga was a cleansing moment for the sport. It launched the age of the baseball commissioner, as baseball owners hired Landis and surrendered to him the control of their game. Fountain shows how sweeping changes in 1920s triggered by the scandal moved baseball away from its association with gamblers and fixers, and details how American's attitude toward the pastime shifted as they entered into "The Golden Age of Sport." Situating the Black Sox events in the context of later scandals, including those involving Reds manager and player Pete Rose, and the ongoing use of steroids in the game up through the present, Fountain illuminates America's near century-long fascination with the story, and its continuing relevance today.
Steve Bogira’s riveting book takes us into the heart of America’s criminal justice system. Courtroom 302 is the story of one year in one courtroom in Chicago’s Cook County Criminal Courthouse, the busiest felony courthouse in the country. We see the system through the eyes of the men and women who experience it, not only in the courtroom but in the lockup, the jury room, the judge’s chambers, the spectators’ gallery. When the judge and his staff go to the scene of the crime during a burglary trial, we go with them on the sheriff’s bus. We witness from behind the scenes the highest-profile case of the year: three young white men, one of them the son of a reputed mobster, charged with the racially motivated beating of a thirteen-year-old black boy. And we follow the cases that are the daily grind of the court, like that of the middle-aged man whose crack addiction brings him repeatedly back before the judge. Bogira shows us how the war on drugs is choking the system, and how in most instances justice is dispensed–as, under the circumstances, it must be–rapidly and mindlessly. The stories that unfold in the courtroom are often tragic, but they no longer seem so to the people who work there. Says a deputy in 302: “You hear this stuff every day, and you’re like, ‘Let’s go, let’s go, let’s get this over with and move on to the next thing.’” Steve Bogira is, as Robert Caro says, “a masterful reporter.” His special gift is his understanding of people–and his ability to make us see and understand them. Fast-paced, gripping, and bursting with character and incident, Courtroom 302 is a unique illumination of our criminal court system that raises fundamental issues of race, civil rights, and justice. From the Hardcover edition.

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