Major league baseball fans tend to fall into one of two categories: Those who love the New York Yankees and those who loathe the New York Yankees. As a pitcher for the St. Louis Cardinals, Nashville native Johnny Beazley gave the latter group a lot to cheer about when he led his team in two of the four victories over the Yankees in the 1942 World Series.
In winning the series-clinching game, he earned the nickname "Yankee Killer." But that was just one chapter in Beazley's life as a baseball player, business owner, and civic leader. More information about Beazley is now available in a free exhibit, titled "Johnny Beazley and Baseball in Tennessee," on display at the Tennessee State Library and Archives.
This exhibit, which opens today, tells the story of Beazley's career and features items from the John Andrew Beazley Collection.
Visitors can begin their journeys through the exhibit with Beazley's high school days at Hume-Fogg and his time in the minor leagues. They can learn about his major league career during the 1940s and celebrate his triumphant victories in the 1942 World Series. They can stand with him during his military service in World War II. And follow his post-war return to baseball, retirement, and civic service.
"Johnny Beazley and Baseball in Tennessee" weaves the history of Beazley's baseball career together with other baseball topics of the era, such as Sulphur Dell baseball stadium, the Negro Leagues and integration of baseball, and the business side of professional baseball.
Visitors to the State Library and Archives are invited to come explore Beazley's story. The exhibit will remain open through late spring.
The State Library and Archives is located at 403 Seventh Avenue North, just west of the State Capitol building in downtown Nashville. The exhibit is located in the building's lobby directly behind the main entrance.
The Tennessee State Library and Archives is open Tuesdays through Saturdays, from 8 a.m. until 4:30 p.m., with the exception of state holidays. Parking is available in front, behind and beside the building.