"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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White Sox catcher Ray Schalk, Comiskey Park, c. 1919 (SDN-057210)
I’m not sure who else knew about the fix at the end of the first game. Comiskey and Gleason heard the series might be crooked, but neither one did anything about it. What could they do? Eddie Cicotte and Lefty Williams were both in on the fix, and were the only two pitchers who could help us win. Ray Schalk, future hall of famer, was catchin’ for both of ’em, and could tell there was somethin’ fishy. There were key moments when he called one pitch, and Cicotte would throw somethin’ else. Schalk could tell that Cicotte was ruinin’ plays on purpose. Schalk started yellin’ at Cicotte on the field, and complainin’ to Gleason. At the end of Game One, I think, both Schalk and Gleason knew the Series victory was in doubt. Gleason then threatened us sayin’ he would take an iron to any players who were fixin’ the series.

White Sox catcher Ray Schalk, Comiskey Park, c. 1919 (SDN-057210)

I’m not sure who else knew about the fix at the end of the first game. Comiskey and Gleason heard the series might be crooked, but neither one did anything about it. What could they do? Eddie Cicotte and Lefty Williams were both in on the fix, and were the only two pitchers who could help us win. Ray Schalk, future hall of famer, was catchin’ for both of ’em, and could tell there was somethin’ fishy. There were key moments when he called one pitch, and Cicotte would throw somethin’ else. Schalk could tell that Cicotte was ruinin’ plays on purpose. Schalk started yellin’ at Cicotte on the field, and complainin’ to Gleason. At the end of Game One, I think, both Schalk and Gleason knew the Series victory was in doubt. Gleason then threatened us sayin’ he would take an iron to any players who were fixin’ the series.