HUNTSVILLE — Satchel Paige. Josh Gibson. Cool Papa Bell. Jackie Robinson.
These names are legendary in baseball through their accomplishments in the Negro Leagues.
Now, thanks to the National Bobblehead Hall of Fame and Museum, baseball fans can have a piece of that history for their home and office. The Milwaukee-based museum is offering Negro Leagues Mystery Bobblehead Boxes to celebrate Black History Month.
“We’re excited to be releasing these special Negro Leagues Mystery Bobblehead Boxes in conjunction with Black History Month,” National Bobblehead Hall of Fame and Museum co-founder and CEO Phil Sklar said. “These boxes will give people a mix of some of our most popular Negro Leagues Bobbleheads from the past five years featuring legends like Satchel Paige, Hank Aaron, Cool Papa Bell and many of the other legends who played in the Negro Leagues.”
The boxes are available here with one, three or five bobbleheads per order. Fans who purchase multiple boxes will receive unique bobbleheads in each box with a maximum of 50 unique bobbleheads due to the limited quantities of the bobbleheads.
“With over 100 different bobbleheads included in the Mystery Boxes, fans are sure to get unique bobbleheads that they can add to their collection or start a new one,” Sklar said.
The museum has been producing the bobbleheads in conjunction with the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum for more than five years with proceeds supporting the NLBM’s mission, Sklar said.
“We have a display with all of the Negro Leagues Bobbleheads at the National Bobblehead Hall of Fame and Museum, and we get a lot of younger children who know about and are excited to see greats like Satchel Paige, Jackie Robinson, Cool Papa Bell, Josh Gibson and others.,” he said. “A lot of that is due to the efforts of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum to keep the legacy of the league and its players alive.
“We see these bobbleheads as part of that effort. People pass their bobbleheads along from generation to generation and these will continue to teach future generations about the Negro Leagues, segregation, and many other important topics.”
In June, Major League Baseball is holding a MLB Tribute game in Birmingham’s Rickwood Field to honor the Negro Leagues. Rickwood Field is the oldest professional ballpark in the United States and former home of the Birmingham Black Barons of the Negro Leagues.
The St. Louis Cardinals will play the San Francisco Giants in the June 20 game in which the Cardinals and the players and coaches will wear period uniforms.
Sklar said he is hoping to have a display at the game and to visit the legendary ballpark and the Negro Southern League Museum, adjacent to Regions Field.
“We are currently in discussions to have Negro Leagues Bobbleheads available at the game and should know more in the coming weeks,” he said. “As a big baseball fan who has been to games at 29 of the 30 current stadiums (as well as several former stadiums), I would love to be there.
“They (Negro Southern League Museum) have carried a few of our bobbleheads, and it would be great to visit if we’re able to go to the game.”
This is a special year for the Negro Leagues with the tribute game at Rickwood Field; a Baseball Hall of Fame Tribute to the Negro Leagues All-Star Game and Voices of Black Baseball Special Exhibit; and the celebration of the 100th Anniversary of the first Negro Leagues World Series.
The National Bobblehead Hall of Fame and Museum opened Feb. 1, 2019. The HOF and Museum also produces customized bobbleheads for retail sale as well as organizations, individuals, and teams across the country.
The NLBM is a privately funded museum dedicated to preserving the history of Negro League baseball in America. The NLBM was founded in 1990 in Kansas City in the historic 18th and Vine District, the hub of African American cultural activity in Kansas City during the first half of the 20th century.
Since moving into its 10,000 square-foot home in November 1997, the museum has welcomed more than 2 million visitors and has become one of the most important cultural institutions in the world for its work to give voice to a once forgotten chapter of baseball and American history.
The Negro Southern League Museum tells the story of African-American baseball in America through the eyes of Birmingham. The museum features the largest collection of original Negro League baseball artifacts in the country.
NSLM also features an on-site research center that is supported by a research team of seven of the top researchers in Negro League and Southern League baseball history.
To further engage with returning and first-time visitors, the museum has created programs ranging from thought-provoking lectures to fun, family friendly events.
The museum is open Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. There is no charge for admission.