California Room - Local History Collection

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Covering cities in California, 1867-1970

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Today's Exhibits and Events

Baseball jersey, glove and ball with photos of Japanese American Baseball players

The Asahi Nine: Japanese American Baseball In San José

By the 1920s, Japanese baseball leagues stretched across the west coast from Seattle to Los Angeles. More than just a game, baseball provided a bridge between...

Tuesday, July 16, 2019 - 1:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Library, 5th Floor Special Collections Area - California Room

Local History Blog

Image: A c.1918 portrait of Russell Hinaga, San Jose Asahi pitcher from 1918-42. Courtesy of the Hinaga Family.
Back in 1990, I read a book called The Rise of Japanese Baseball Power by Robert Obojski. I became fascinated by the long history of Japan's love of the game (from the 1880s), the ongoing interaction between the United States and Japan through the game, the colorful players, and the experiences of American players who had journeyed to Japan to play on Japanese teams. I soon began searching for more books on the topic, and eventually published a bimonthly newsletter, The Japanese Baseball Enthusiast in May of 1993 (it ran a little over a year). The newsletter focused on Japanese...Read more...
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Book Cover For Waling The Complete Book
When A Typical Work Day Nearly Sparked An International Incident We all have our daily work routines. However every once in a while something occurs that shakes up the status quo. In the case of my great great Uncle George Muller it came in the form of a minor celebrity by the name of Dr. Barbara Moore. Apparently there was a disagreement over fruits, vegetables, and a turtle she had brought from Sydney, Australia. California law prohibits the importation of fruits and vegetables for health reasons and Dr. Moore failed to declare them. When Customs Inspector Muller tried to compromise...Read more...
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