Latinos and Baseball

A National Community Collecting Initiative

Exploring baseball at the heart of our communities  |  Exploración de béisbol en el corazón de nuestras comunidades

Latinos and Baseball: In the Barrios and the Big Leagues is a multi-year community collecting initiative at the National Museum of American History in collaboration with the Smithsonian Latino Center, focusing on the historic role baseball has played as a social and cultural force within Latino communities across the nation. Baseball has been and continues to be an important means for celebrating national and ethnic identities, building communities, and negotiating race and class relations in our increasingly globalized world. 

This project builds on a growing body of original research, oral histories, and collections by and with our partners to document the impact Latina/o communities have had on American history and culture through the lens of baseball. Tracing histories of people, places, and objects that reflect the complex interplay of racial identities and sports across the nation allows us to tell diverse and unexpected stories within our communities.This project enriches local and national collections, includes plans for future exhibitions, and supports public programs and community engagement across the nation. In this first year, we laid the groundwork necessary to launch a National Museum of American History community collection initiative. 

Our project launched in October 2015 with a panel of scholars and set of workshops at the National Museum of American History.  The first community collecting event was hosted in San Bernardino, California followed by five more events in three cities: Los Angeles, California; Kansas City, Missouri and Syracuse, New York. Many thanks to our partners for making this initiative a huge success! We kicked off 2017 with an event in Tampa, Florida and have more community events planned over the year to build interest, expand the archive, and ultimately bring collections to the national stage. Please check back periodically for updates and information.  We look forward to seeing you at our events around the country!

Event Calendar:

  • February 19-20, 2016 - San Bernardino, California, hosted by California State University, San Bernardino
  • July 17, 2016 - Los Angeles, California, hosted by LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes
  • August 12-13, 2016 - Kansas City, Missouri, hosted by the Kansas City Museum
  • September 15, 2016 - Syracuse, New York, hosted by La Casita Cultural Center at Syracuse University
  • September 29, 2016 - Alamosa, Colorado, hosted by Adams State University
  • February 18, 2017 - Tampa, Florida, hosted by the Ybor City Museum Society and Al Lopez House
  • May 13, 2017 - Framingham, Massachusetts, hosted by Framingham State University
  • September 22-24, 2017 - Cleveland, Ohio, hosted by the Baseball Heritage Museum