The Gashouse Gang: How Dizzy Dean, Leo Durocher, Branch Rickey, Pepper Martin, and Their Colorful, Come-from-Behind Ball Club Won the World Series—and America’s Heart—During the Great Depression

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PublicAffairs, Mar 26, 2007 - Sports & Recreation - 336 pages
4 Reviews
With The Gashouse Gang, John Heidenry delivers the definitive account of one the greatest and most colorful baseball teams of all times, the 1934 St. Louis Cardinals, filled with larger-than-life baseball personalities like Branch Rickey, Leo Durocher, Pepper Martin, Casey Stengel, Satchel Paige, Frankie Frisch, and—especially— the eccentric good ol' boy and great pitcher Dizzy Dean and his brother Paul.

The year 1934 marked the lowest point of the Great Depression, when the U.S. went off the gold standard, banks collapsed by the score, and millions of Americans were out of work. Epic baseball feats offered welcome relief from the hardships of daily life. The Gashouse Gang, the brilliant culmination of a dream by its general manager, Branch Rickey, the first to envision a farm system that would acquire and "educate" young players in the art of baseball, was adored by the nation, who saw itself—scruffy, proud, and unbeatable—in the Gang.

Based on original research and told in entertaining narrative style, The Gashouse Gang brings a bygone era and a cast full of vivid personalities to life and unearths a treasure trove of baseball lore that will delight any fan of the great American pastime.

 

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User Review  - pjsullivan - LibraryThing

An entertaining read for any baseball fan. It transcends the game, into personalities, business and social conditions, historical context, etc. The players are real human beings, warts and all, not ... Read full review

Page turner/reread!!

User Review  - JulieD - Borders

I loved the way The Gashouse Gang was written so readers learn the history of each of the players and how they got into baseball. I love learning about history through personal stories. I grew up in ... Read full review

Contents

II
1
III
29
IV
73
V
109
VI
155
VII
181
VIII
199
IX
239
X
267
XI
285
XII
293
XIII
301
XIV
305
XV
306
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Page xi - And then the dispossessed were drawn west — from Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico; from Nevada and Arkansas families, tribes, dusted out, tractored out. Carloads, caravans, homeless and hungry; twenty thousand and fifty thousand and a hundred thousand and two hundred thousand. They streamed over the mountains, hungry and restless — restless as ants, scurrying to find work to do — to lift, to push, to pull, to pick, to cut anything, any burden to bear, for food. The kids are hungry. We got...

About the author (2007)

John Heidenry is a native of St. Louis and was the founding editor, in 1977, of St. Louis magazine and the St. Louis Literary Supplement. He is currently the Executive Editor of The Week. The author of several previous books, he lives in New York City.

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