American Treasures of the Library of Congress: Memory, Exhibit Object Focus

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Baseball Songs

Take Me Out to the Ball-Game
Jack Norworth, lyrics
"Take Me Out to the Ball-Game,"
Music Division

Batterin' Babe, Look at Him Now
Jack O'Brien, words and music
"Batterin' Babe, Look at Him Now."
Baltimore: St. Mary's Industrial School, n.d.
Sheet music
Music Division
Copyright deposits

Play Ball
Hector Marchese, "Play Ball."
New York: Roger Music, Inc.
Sheet music
Music Division
Copyright deposits

The birth of baseball was followed quickly by the birth of baseball songs. The first piece of such music was The Baseball Polka written in 1858. The most popular of baseball songs, Take Me Out to the Ball-Game, was penned by two songsters who had never even seen the game. This song has become the game's anthem.

The Library has an extensive collection of sheet music celebrating the game of baseball, its teams, and the sport's stars reaching as far back as 1858--much of it attained through copyright deposit. An American icon, Babe Ruth is considered by many to be the best baseball player in the history of the game was the subject of numerous popular songs. Batterin' Babe shown here "dedicated to our own Babe Ruth" was published by St. Mary's Industrial School, the reformatory and orphanage in Baltimore where Ruth spent much of his youth.

J.H. Kalbfleisch
"The Live Oak Polka,"
Music Division

Mrs. Lou Gehrig and Fred Fisher,
lyrics and music
"I Can't Get to First Base
with You,"
Music Division

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