Tuesday, January 16, 2007

History in the Basement

They don't like to talk about this play around here, but the picture at left shows the famous (or infamous, depending on your point of view) Halloween punt return by Billy Cannon of LSU against Ole Miss in 1959. Cannon's run helped LSU beat the Rebels 7-3 (but very few remember that Ole Miss won a Sugar Bowl rematch 21-0).

The point of all this nostalgia is to tell you about John Miley of Evansville, Indiana. John has a monumental collection of old sports radio and TV broadcasts (including a rare 45-rpm record of Cannon's run) archived in his basement. Some of John's recordings go back to 1933, and his collection is so extensive that it has been profiled in the New York Times and National Public Radio.

John is now 75 years y0ung and looking for a permanent place to put his collection. He has talked to a few museums, including the National Archives and the Library of Congress, but told me on the phone that he would prefer a university with "an outstanding communications department," and especially one that focuses on sports.

He's trying to get the word out about his collection to interested parties, and I told him we'd be happy to publicize his collection here at JSM. If you or your university might be interested in this collection, you can contact John at jmindiana7@sigecom.net


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