"Shoeless" Joe Jackson

The 1919 World Series featured baseball’s most infamous scandal. That Fall Classic pitted the heavily favored Chicago White Sox against the underdog Cincinnati Reds. Eager to make some extra money, some Sox took bribes from gamblers to throw the World Series. Eventually, the bribery was discovered and a national scandal erupted. Sox star outfielder "Shoeless" Joe Jackson’s name appeared prominently among those implicated as cheaters. By 1921, several White Sox, including Shoeless Joe, faced a criminal trial. A Chicago jury found them not guilty, but the baseball commissioner banned them from the sport forever. Follow as the Chicago History Museum uses Shoeless Joe's voice to tell his story.

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The big All-Star charity game was at Boston’s Fenway Park in 1917. I remember Ty signin’ me up for the throwin’ contest before the game. I just went in the outfield an’ threw the ball like I always did. I ended up tossin’ the ball 397 feet! That ended up bein’ 12 feet farther than anyone else. The game was for a really good cause. Buck Weaver, Ty Cobb, other A.L. stars, and me raised money for the family of a recently deceased Boston sports hero by playin’ the Red Sox. The Red Sox ended up beatin’ us two to nothin’.

Shoeless Joe and Charlie Herbert “Lefty” Jackson (no relation), Comiskey Park, 1915 (SDN-060439), Detroit Tigers Ty Cobb and former White Sox manager Kid Gleason at Comiskey Park, 1926 (SDN-062596), Ty Cobb felt blanket, ca. 1915 (ICHi-67443)