Tag: Walter Johnson
Each January, as frost and snow cover baseball fields across America, the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum provides heartwarming news for fans of our national pastime. This is the season when the Baseball Writers’ Association of America elects new members from the ranks of retired ballplayers.
When the Hall of Fame was first established in 1936, its inaugural class of inductees included legendary ballplayers Ty Cobb, Walter Johnson, Christy Mathewson, and Babe Ruth. These were four of the most talented stars of the early 20th century—a collection of hitters and pitchers worthy of Major League Baseball’s highest honor.
And while all four ballplayers are best known for their statistics and individual accomplishments, they also distinguished themselves for patriotic actions off the field.
As World War I drew to a close in 1918, both Ty Cobb and Christy Mathewson served in France as part of the Chemical Warfare Service. Commonly referred to as the “Gas and Flame Division,” the unit combated the virulent effects of German gas attacks.
Throughout the final months of the war, the two ballplayers took part in several dangerous training exercises. “Men screamed . . . when they got a whiff of the sweet death in the air, they went crazy with fear,” Cobb recalled in his 1961 autobiography. The effects of chemical warfare took a particular toll on Mathewson, who died … [ Read all ]
Posted by Gregory Marose on January 24, 2012, under - World War I, - World War II, Prologue Magazine.
Tags: 104th Field Artillery Regiment, Babe Ruth, baseball, Beyond the Box Office, Christy Mathewson, National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, New York National Guard, The Bambino, Ty Cobb, Walter Johnson, war bonds