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Vet Plaques Come to Hatboro

By David M. Jordan

 

With the closing of Veterans Stadium preparatory to the Phillies’ move to their new ballpark, one of the questions of interest to the Philadelphia Athletics Historical Society was the fate of the Wall of Fame plaques celebrating the past greats of the A’s. With the cooperation of Larry Shenk, the Phillies’ director of public relations, the club agreed to sell the plaques as a group to the A’s Society. This involved pulling them out of the auction which the Phillies held to dispose of thousands of other articles from the Vet, an auction which netted Phillies Charities more than $700,000. The result is that these plaques, honoring A’s greats from Connie Mack to Rube Oldring, will be kept together, rather than being dispersed among twenty-five individual owners.

 

On March 1, St. David’s Day, Vice-President Clara McGonigal, Harry Adams and I went to the warehouse at 21st and Oregon where the plaques were stored and received them on behalf of the Society. From there it was a happy trip to Hatboro and the unloading into our museum. The bronze plaques are rather heavy, so their display is not simply a matter of fastening them to our walls. The Executive Board of the Society, along with General Manager Ernie Montella, will soon be making arrangements for their permanent display.

 

Shenk, incidentally, has advised us that, while the plaques will not be a feature of Citizens Bank Park, the names of all of the A’s recipients of Wall of Fame honors will be inscribed in the base of the Connie Mack statue. This statue, which once stood on Lehigh Avenue, is being removed from its previous location at the corner of Broad and Pattison to the Eleventh Street entrance to the new park.

 

In the meantime, you can help the Society to pay for these priceless artifacts. For a contribution of $250, your name can be memorialized as a sponsor of a particular player’s plaque. Send your check for that amount or more, payable to the “Philadelphia Athletics Historical Society,” to the Society at 6 N. York Road, Hatboro, PA 19040, with “Plaques” marked on the outside of the envelope, and tell us which player you’d like to honor. Your name will be inscribed as a sponsor of that star.

 

There are 25 Philadelphia Athletics and 25 Philadelphia Phillies who since 1978 were inducted annually into the Phillies Wall of Fame. To visit that part of our site, click here.

 

Society members Clara McGonigal & Harry Adams are all smiles as they display the Gus Zernial Wall of Fame plaque.

 

Brian Glavin & Michelle DeVicaris of the
Phillies Public Relations department
lead the way to the storage location of
the Wall of Fame plaques.

 

Jordan & Adams are excited over this acquistion.

Back safely at the Society's Museum in Hatboro
McGonigal & Adams still all smiles even after a long
slow trip from the Vet. The 25 plaques that were once
housed on the second level at Veterans Stadium will
soon be housed on the Society's first level for all visitors
to enjoy.

 

 

 

 


 

 


 

 

 

 

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