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Lawyers in the Baseball Hall of Fame

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Attorney Christian Brill is speaking this week at the 30th Cooperstown Symposium on Baseball and American Culture at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, New York.  The presentation, made with Prof. Howard W. Brill, is entitled “Lawyers in the Baseball Hall of Fame” and discusses the 11 law school graduates and attorneys who have been elected to the Hall of Fame.

Three of these members have interesting connections to Ohio:

  1. Miller Huggins, Yankees manager during the 1920s, received a J.D. from the University of Cincinnati while starring on the school’s baseball team.  He was reportedly encouraged by dean (and future president) William Howard Taft that he was more likely to succeed in baseball rather than the law.

  2. Larry MacPhail, a graduate of George Washington University Law School, practiced law in Columbus before becoming a part-owner of the Columbus Red Birds minor league franchise.  He was instrumental in the building of Columbus’s Cooper Stadium in 1932 and as a major league executive for the Cincinnati Reds, brought night baseball to the major leagues in 1935.

  3. Branch Rickey, remembered for his role in integrating baseball by signing Jackie Robinson to the Brooklyn Dodgers, grew up in southern Ohio and graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University in Delaware in 1904.  He received an L.L.B. from the University of Michigan while coaching the Wolverines’ baseball team.

This is Brill’s third presentation at the conference.  He has previously co-authored articles entitled Take Me Out to the Hearing: Major League Baseball Players before Congress and Baseball Mascots and the Law.

The Cooperstown Symposium on Baseball and American Culture, co-sponsored by SUNY Oneonta and the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, examines the impact of baseball on American culture from interdisciplinary and multi-disciplinary perspectives.

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