Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum
1800 North Congress Avenue • Austin, TX, 78701
(512) 936-8746 main • (866) 369-7108 toll free
(512) 936-4649 reservations
Current Exhibit: Play Ball!: Texas Baseball
Through January 4, 2004
Known as America’s “national pastime,” baseball holds a special place in the hearts of Texans and in the history of the Lone Star State. Since the creation of the Texas League in 1888, over 100 Texas towns have hosted minor league teams, more than any other state.
This special exhibit captures the excitement of the game with artifacts like original uniforms, equipment, stadium details, mascots and memorabilia. Learn about native Texan baseball Hall of Famers like superstar pitcher Nolan Ryan, Rube Foster, founder of the Negro National League in 1920, and Austin’s own Willie Wells, an African-American shortstop who pioneered the use of the batting helmet.
Discover ballpark innovations created in Texas, such as air-conditioned restrooms for women and the world’s first domed stadium. With re-created radio broadcasts and oral histories from current major league players and managers who got their start in the Texas League (including “Pudge” Rodriguez, Bob Brenly and Mark McLemore), this exhibit brings baseball back to its time-honored traditions.
Nolan Ryan Exhibit Center
In the fall of 1996, the $1.2 million Nolan Ryan Center was completed and donated to Alvin Community College with space leased within the building for the Nolan Ryan Exhibit which opened in early 1999. Some of the highlights in the exhibit hall are an interactive pitch-catch exhibit where the visitor "feels" a Nolan Ryan fastball in a catcher's mitt. A small theater provides insight into Ryan’s character and his journey towards excellence. Videos, stats and exclusive photos of Ryan’s Major League Baseball career, including seven no-hitters, are featured at the exhibit center all year round.