Cooperstown Crier - Your Source for Hometown News - Cooperstown, Baseball Hall of Fame

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June 20, 2013

A look back: How elections came about

Baseball Mecca not built in one day


In 1989, a new wing, formerly the Alfred Corning Clark Gymnasium, was added. The $7 million project, dedicated as the Fetzer-Yawkey Building, was the fifth major expansion in the past 50 years. John Fetzer, then Chairman of the Board of the Detroit Tigers, and Jean Yawkey, then Chairwoman of the corporation that owned the Boston Red Sox, each made significant contributions to the project.

In the early 1990s, the library added 22,000 square feet to the original 7,000 square-foot building. The $6 million project, designed by Remick Architects, included a research area, exhibit gallery, bookstore, theater, state-of-the-art storage and a curved hallway that connected the library to the Hall of Fame Gallery.  

“After 25 years, the expansion physically connected the museum and library once again,” said former Baseball Hall of Fame Librarian Tom Heitz. “We wanted to encourage visitors to take advantage of the library’s resources.”

The most recent renovation, completed during the spring of 2005, focused on enhancing existing space rather than expansion. The $20 million project, designed by Hugh Hardy, tied all existing structures together, allowing visitors to make a smooth transition from one gallery to the next. The project also improved access to the museum for those with special needs, and furthered the institution’s artifact preservation capabilities.

This story was compiled from stories written by Bill Francis, a library associate at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum

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