The history of Baseball in Paradise at the Palm Beach County History Museum

It’s that time again. Each September, the Historical Society of Palm Beach County opens a new exhibition in the admission-free Richard and Pat Johnson Palm Beach County History Museum in the restored 1916 Court House in downtown West Palm Beach. This year’s exhibit, “For the Love of the Game: Baseball in the Palm Beaches,” will open on September 6, 2016.

hirescarterThe exhibit highlights the impact of America’s Pastime over twelve decades in our area. Baseball first took root in Palm Beach as entertainment for winter visitors to Henry Flagler’s elegant hotels. Locals took up the game and competed against other nearby communities. As the fervor grew, such notable people as Arthur C. Spalding, George E. Andrews, and Connie Mack provided the expertise and facilities to stimulate wider participation. Warm weather brought baseball greats Babe Ruth, Hank Aaron, Pete Rose, and Gary Carter to the area for spring training. Today major league, minor league, and even little league teams continue the legacy with spectacular plays, international notoriety, and world-class stadiums.

The Historical Society decided to take new design direction this year, and hired Carey O’Donnell and her team at the O’Donnell Agency to design this exhibit.

Using archival photographs and historical artifacts—some of them donations or loans from our community—“Baseball” will offer a compelling learning opportunity for visitors, especially in the context of the Palm Beach County history told in the museum’s permanent galleries. The exhibition will enhance what students at various grade levels are learning in the classroom, and there will be hands-on experiences to appeal to visitors of all ages.

The Richard and Pat Johnson Palm Beach County History Museum
Address: 300 North Dixie Highway, West Palm Beach
Hours: Monday – Friday, 10 am to 5 pm; Saturday, 10 am to 4 pm
Admission: Free

The new exhibit and permanent galleries are open to the public, Monday through Friday, 10 am to 5 pm; and Saturday, 10 am to 4 pm. For information regarding the Historical Society’s memberships, lecture series, and special events, visit

Featured image courtesy of O’Donnell Agency Facebook page.


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