ROCHESTER — The Rochester Public Library, in partnership with the Rochester Baseball Historical Society is presenting an exhibition that provides a uniquely local view of America’s national pastime entitled “Rochester Baseball: From Mumford’s Meadow to Frontier Field.” The exhibition features 22 panels of photographs and information detailing 188 years of baseball in Rochester. The display is located in the Lower Link Gallery of the Central Library of Rochester and Monroe County, 115 South Ave, from now until June 14.
“Our goal was to convey the long, rich history of Rochester baseball in a compelling manner and thanks to the hard work of some dedicated, local historians and the folks at the Rochester Public Library, I believe we’ve succeeded,” said author/columnist Scott Pitoniak, one of the founding members of the Rochester Baseball Historical Society (RBHS). “As this exhibit shows, the game has been inextricably woven into the fabric of our community for nearly two centuries. I know I’m speaking for all the members of RBHS when I say it’s been a privilege to have been a part of this project.”
Also on display as a complement to the Rochester baseball display is the “Cathedrals of America” exhibition which features several scale models of baseball stadiums built by architect Mark McEwan, including a replica of Frontier Field. In June 2011, MacEwan, 23, of Spencerport, a graduate of the University at Buffalo School of Architecture and Planning and a 2012 Master’s degree graduate of the Kent State University College of Architecture and Environmental Design, approached the Rochester Red Wings regarding the potential construction of a scaled replica model of Rochester’s own Frontier Field. He had been in the process of constructing replica stadiums on and off for the past several years with his previous efforts culminating in the Frontier Field model.
Both the “Rochester Baseball” and “Cathedrals” exhibits were developed as companion pieces and a warm up to the “Pride and Passion: The African American Baseball Experience” exhibition that will run from May 1 to June 14 at the Central Library. “Pride and Passion” is a traveling version of a permanent installation of the same name at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, NY. The display is composed of colorful freestanding panels featuring photographs of teams, players and original documents all examining the challenges faced by African American baseball players as they sought equal opportunities in their sport beginning in the post Civil War era.