Hirshberg, Al (1909-1973)
NOTE: All or part of this collection is stored off-site. Several days' advance notice is required for retrieval.
The Al Hirshberg collection consists of manuscripts, correspondence, printed material, memorabilia, photographs, and other material.
Manuscripts by Hirshberg in the collection include drafts of Fear Strikes Out (1955); two Barry Drake baseball novels for teen-aged readers (1955-1956); From Sandlot to League President: the Story of Joe Cronin (1962); Basketball is my Life, written with Bob Cousy (1963); Backstage at the Mets (1966); Cowboy at the Mike, written with Curt Gowdy (1966); Yaz, written with Carl Yazstremski (1966); The Glory Runners (1968); Quiet Superstar: Hank Aaron (1969); and Highstick with Ted Green (1971). There are a number of manuscripts from unpublished books by Hirshberg, including The Al Kaline Story; Basketball's Greatest Teams; a book on Father Pfau, the first Roman Catholic priest to enter Alcoholics Anonymous; and Not Quite Alone, a book ghost-written by Hirshberg for Dr. James DeWitt, chronicling the doctor's struggle with drug addiction (ca. 1971).
Correspondence in the Hirshberg collection includes exchanges with agents, editors, other sports writers, sports figures, Boston University officials, and fans (1939-1972). There is also correspondence to Bert Hirshberg, Al's second wife, following Al's death (1973-1976). There is some undated correspondence to Al from his brother, first wife, daughter, and mother; there is also some correspondence from Al to his first wife. Notable correspondents include Charles Angoff, Red Auerbach, Jimmy Breslin, Walter Brown, Abe Burack, Bob Cousy, Dominic DiMaggio, George Frazier, Curt Gowdy, Edward M. Kennedy, John F. Kennedy, Myrick Land, Alan J. Pakula, Jimmy Piersall, Jackie Robinson, Leverett Saltonstall, Gil Santos, Charles M. Schulz, Bernard "Toots" Shor, Lowell Thomas, Carl Yazstremski, John Volpe, and Thomas A. Yawkey.
Printed material includes galleys for Fear Strikes Out; Barry Drake: Varsity Double Play; My Giants; 88 Men and 2 Women; Sex and Crime; and Cowboy at the Mike, as well as partial proof sheets and partial galleys for He Is in Heaven; Not Quite Alone (ca. 1971); and a Boston Bruins guide (1970-1971). There are newspaper clippings concerning Jim Piersall's problem with the Red sox; and Ken "Hawk" Harrelson's trade to Cleveland. Also present are articles by Hirshberg from The Boston Advertiser (1957); American Weekly (1958-1959); Argosy (1958-1959); Better Homes and Gardens (1959); Coronet (1955); Cosmopolitan (1956); Family Circle (1955-1956); Good Housekeeping (1962-1964); Life magazine (1964) McCall's (1955); New York Times Magazine (1958); Pageant (1958); Parade magazine, Boston Sunday Post (1956); Saturday Evening Post (1952-1962); Redbook (1954-1955); Saga (1958-1960); Sport Magazine (1949-1970); True magazine (1964); Sports Illustrated (1955-1969); This Week magazine (1958-1960); and The Boston Sunday Herald (1960-1962).
Memorabilia in the Hirshberg collection includes certificates of membership to various collections (1949-1963). One, for the Authors Guild (1955) was signed by author/critic Elizabeth Janeway; novelist Merle Miller; and novelist/short story writer Helen Hull. There are several posters in the collection: two advertising Boston Post sports coverage, mentioning Hirshberg; a small poster advertising Boston Tobacco Table (1949), listing Hirshberg and athlete Harry Aganis, among others; and a poster proof from Viking Press advertising Hirshberg’s Yaz, among other of the company’s publications (1968).
Photographs of Hirshberg in the collection include some with various sports figures (1942-1968). They include iamges of Hirshberg alone on a beach in Puerto Rico (1952); a photo of Hirshberg with Ted Williams; and a set of photos of Ice follies stars, inscribed to Hirshberg (1942).
Other material includes contracts and agreements between Hirshberg, his co-authors, agents, and publishers (1950-1972); royalty statements, arranged by publisher (1950-1972); payment statements (1959-1972); microfilm documenting magazine articles and radio commentaries written over a twenty-year period; as well as scripts of "Saturday Broadcasts" (1951-1952).