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University of Iowa News Release


June 21, 2007

Old Capitol Museum Exhibit Features Iowa's Baseball Legacy

The Old Capitol Museum will exhibit "Hometown Heroes: Iowa's Baseball Legacy," a collection of Iowa baseball history and artifacts from national baseball icons Friday, June 29, through Sunday, Sept. 9.

The exhibit will begin with a reception hosted by the Old Capitol from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on June 29. A seminar will be held from 5-7 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 2, featuring John Liepa, owner of the collection on display. Liepa is a history teacher and chair of the State Historical Society.

Of the thousands of pieces in his collection, Liepa and the Old Capitol Museum have selected items that show Iowa's history in baseball, as well as a some images and cards of the sport's national icons. Artifacts include a Babe Ruth rookie card and autographed ball, as well as Iowa's oldest known baseball program and card. One rare card on display will be of Calvin McVey, the first Iowa native to play in the major leagues. The card is from 1872 and is autographed on the back.

"The focus is primarily over the 200 Iowans that have played in the major leagues, as well as the seven that made it to the Baseball Hall of Fame," Liepa said.

With a focus on Iowa Baseball players, visitors to the exhibit can learn about how baseball players from Iowa were important to the history of baseball. For those who are interested in baseball and Iowa history, this exhibit should be a wonderful experience for the whole family, according to Kathrine Moermond, museum operations manager.

"We have already had inquiries from mothers wanting to bring their children, and from baseball fanatics -- both looking forward to the exhibit. Baseball is such an important part of American history, and this will be a wonderful chance to see how Iowa played its part," Moermond said.

On Friday, Aug. 17, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum will co-host a baseball exhibit party at the Old Capitol Museum. This event will include a special viewing of the "Hometown Heroes" and music from guitarist and singer Glenn Lonsdale and fiddler Carlis Faurot, who will play their original music as well as classic ballpark songs.

The exhibit will be open during regular museum hours: Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Thursday and Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. The museum is closed on Mondays.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500

CONTACTS: Old Capitol Museum: Trevor Thomas, 319-335-0548,; Byron Preston, 319-335-0809,; University News Services: George McCrory, 319-384-0012,; Writer: Lindsey Tinnell