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Interview with William A. Hallahan

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Hallahan, William A. ; O'Neil, Dan


William A. Hallahan talks about his upbringing in Binghamton and the start of his baseball career in Groton, NY at the age of 18. He discusses playing for the St. Louis Cardinals and winning 3/4 of the World Series games in which he pitched. He also notes his time as the starting pitcher for the National League in the first All Star game in 1933. He details friendships with some of the big names in baseball of the time, including Babe Ruth. He later worked for Ozalid as a foreman and also as a coach for Little League baseball.




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Broome County Oral History Project


44:13 Minutes


Broome County Oral History Project

Interview with: William A. Hallahan

Interviewed by: Dan O’Neil

Date of Interview: 25 April 1978

Dan: Ah Bill, would you tell me about your life and working experiences in the community, with emphasis on your baseball career?

Bill: Do you want my birth record and so forth?

Dan: Just your date and place of birth.

Bill: I was born in Binghamton.

Dan: Mhmm. Just go right ahead, Bill.

Bill: August 4, 1902.

Dan: OK.

Bill: Which makes me a senior.

Dan: A senior citizen, right.

Bill: Then I went to, ah, Robinson Street School.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: And for baseball, I went to Groton, New York—do you know where that is?

Dan: I know where that is, yes, outside of Cortland.

Bill: They had a good team. In those da , the plant, the factory supported a ball team and John Hadlik was the manager—he was a former Binghartton player with the New York State League and National League—and I was there for two years. That would be in 1922 or '23, so, ah, 21, 21 and 22.

Dan: How old were you at that time?

Bill: 18 l think, ah, so ah I did pretty well—pitched pretty well up there, and Syracuse was a Cardinal farm, of course, it was a farm then and also Hadlik was scouting for the Cardinals, so I signed with the Cardinals in 1924 at Bradenton, Florida. I remember getting into the hotel and asking where the ballpark was—clerk told me, “Go up the street a ways and turn to your right, and keep going just a few miles.” So I walked, walked it carrying your baseball suit and so on, and I got there. Ah, Herbie Sanders was our trainer at that time, and I asked him where Mr. Rickey was, you know—”find the fellow with the slouched hat near the batting cage.” I went out and introduced myself to Mr. Rickey. He called one of the catchers, Joe Sutherland—he was a veteran—and he said, "Joe," he said. I just got off the train, you might say, and I was getting ready to go on up to pitch batting practice—so I pitched batting practice. It was unheard of in those days, nobody does it, but it worked out all right, and I never saw so many ballplayers because they had played from several of their farms. The Cardinals at that time had something like 25 farm teams that were players that they owned outright for important games.

Dan: But the closest was Syracuse, right?

Bill: Syracuse, right. For here, so I, ah, thought, “how are you ever going to get noticed? Who is ever going to see you with all those fellows?” So all you could do was, ah, keep moving. Oh, I'd run, run, run—chase the ball, run back with it and then hit it, and they were noticing, because on the last day of training, had us all in the big ballroom of the hotel talking. Finally he said, "Well, there's one young,” said, “there’s a fella here that hasn't stopped running since he got here.” So I had to stand up and take a bow, so it did show, if you, ah, keep moving, somebody's going to see you.

Dan: Right.

Bill: And so, ah, I came back north with Syracuse, back up to Syracuse and stayed at Syracuse for a month, I believe, and then I went to Fort Smith, Arkansas. That was another farm, and in Fort Smith, I made all the places I never heard of before: Okmulgee, Muskogee, all those in Oklahoma and, Paron, Topeka, Kansas. I was there about three weeks, and I moved again to Kalamazoo in Michigan—Ontario League, which was beautiful, nice and cool—and, ah, I was there until the season ended, and I was doing pretty well, and I was called back to St. Louis and finished the season with St. Louis. There was quite a bit of traveling that year and we got to see all the large cities in the National League, and traveling on the trains, which was wonderful—beautiful hotels. Funny when I had never been out of Binghamton—never—so kind of a trip, you know. Well the next year, ‘25, we trained in, in Stockton, California, so there was more nice traveling. I come back and was with St. Louis, oh, ‘til June, I think, and then sent to Syracuse again. So after the season was over in Syracuse, why, I returned to St. Louis the following year, 1926. We trained in San Antonio, Texas—Roger Hornsby was the manager.

Dan: What part of Texas?

Bill: San Antonio.

Dan: San Antonio—OK.

Bill: And Roger Hornsby was the manager. I was living, I was on the trip around the circuit, as I say, when Hornsby hit .424. That's a terrific batting average.

Dan: It sure is.

Bill: So, ah, I started in spring—I stayed the full season—and it was the first Pennant and the World Series with the Cardinals won period, and the next year I returned to Syracuse and I finally went back to St. Louis ‘cause in those days the, ah, clubs could do all they wanted to. Could send you out for two years prior—call you back, keep you a year, send you out for two more, and if anybody else wanted you, why, the Cardinals were deep in players. They had the ah, the ah, farm system and it was great, so you just had to wait—so I won 19 games in Syracuse and we finished second, and they didn't have room for me in the Cardinals, so they wanted to go to Houston, Texas, because they promised me a pennant down there. So I didn't care much about going, but the ah, the, ah, General Manager of Houston came up to Binghamton during the winter to, ah, try to coax me into going down there. I thought it would be a bit too warm for me, but finally decided to go and, ah, I had a good year. I won something like 24 games, and we won the pennant and we won the Dixie Series and I, ah, went up to St. Louis that Fall for the World Series—the manager of Houston took me up. So then I talked with Mr. Rickey—I signed for the following years.

Dan: For the following years—that was what year now?

Bill: That would be 1929.

Dan: 1929, and so in other words, ah, they were in the World Series in 1928?

Bill: Yeah, but I wasn't with them.

Dan: You weren't with them but they won, they won the Series.

Bill: No—they got beat four straight.

Dan: Oh, they got beat four straight.

Bill: I went up to see them—

Dan: Oh, I see, OK.

Bill: But in 1929, ah, Billy Southworth was the manager and I didn’t get to play too much—I won 4 and lost 1 game. In 1930 Gabby Street came in and then I started out pretty good. We won the pennant that year and played the Athletics. We didn't win, we didn't win the Series, but ah I pitched a shutout—I won one and lost one.

Dan: This was in the Series?

Bill: 1930.

Dan: 1930, against the Athletics.

Bill: Mhmm, in 1931, we played the Athletics again—we won the pennant. I won 2 games, won 2 games and saved the 7th in that Series, and then in '32, '33, '34 we won the pennant and played Detroit. I started the second game in Detroit, and it was a good game and I was relieved in the 8th—pitched 8 and two thirds innings, I think. The score was tied and a man on First, and they brought in Bill Walker. He picked the man off 1st base, and the game went 12 innings—we lost 3 to 2—there was no decision. So then I stayed with the Cardinals until '36, and then I was with Cincinnati a year and with ah Philadelphia a year, and those were ah, years you like to forget, you know. In the last years, everything was downhill, but ah, ah then when I came back home, I was worked with the Atlantic baseball school—they used to have, Atlantic Oil used to have a baseball school they run the summer. Whitey Anderson was the head of the baseball school.

Dan: That's here?

Bill: Mhmm, in Binghamton, and that would be in 1940 and in 1941—the War started in December 1941.

Dan: Right.

Bill: I was in the Army in August 1942 up at Fort Niagara. They had a good ball team up there too—I didn't play—I coached a little. We played, ah, pretty good teams, and ah, I stayed up there ’til—see, March the following year in '43, I think, and we had, ah, we were over 38, you see, you get out of service—they released us.

Dan: I see.

Bill: So that's how I got out.

Dan: So in other words you just went up to Fort Niagara and you stayed there and coached baseball?

Bill: I worked in the records and assignment.

Dan: Records and assignment—but you, ah, did coach some teams up there?

Bill: Yeah.

Dan: And then you were discharged in '43.

Bill: In '43 of March, went to Ozalid, and I was with Ozalid for 20 years.

Dan: Until ‘63.

Bill: ’Til ‘63.

Dan: Uh huh, and you retired from Ozalid, and in what capacity did you work for Ozalid?

Bill: I was a foreman.

Dan: A foreman—in what department, Bill?

Bill: I was, ah, warehousing, receiving, receiving warehousing and supply clerk.

Dan: Mhmm.

Bill: And so that one time it was on Clinton Street—ah, that big warehouse that Ansco has now.

Dan: Yeah, yeah.

Bill; We had that when it was first built.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: So that about takes care of it.

Dan: Now getting back to your baseball career—at the height of your career, which would be with the St. Louis Cardinals when you pitched in the, ah, let’s see, the World Series against the Athletics that you won—you won 2 pennants in the 2 World Series.

Bill: We won 3 World Series out of—we was in 4 World Series—we won 3.

Dan: Yeah, pardon me just a minute Bill. (Wife turns on TV too loud). OK.

Bill: Won 2 out of 4.

Dan: Won 2 out of 4?

Bill: 3 out of 4.

Dan: 3 out of 4, OK. Now at the height of your season, what was your salary per year, Bill? Do you mind telling me?

Bill: No. I think it was around 7 or 6—I got more than most of the fellas—it was around $7,000.

Dan: $7,000—quite a difference from what they get today.

Bill: I mean, that was when I got first started. I ended up getting $13,500.

Dan: $13,500 at the height of your career—that would be pitching with the Cardinals.

Bill: Regular pitching.

Dan: Yeah.

Bill: Yeah, regular pitching.

Dan: What was the best year you had in the, ah—

Bill: '31, when I won 19 and lost 9, I think, then won 2 games in the World Series, saved the 7th and deciding game—led the League in strikeouts. In 1930, I played, I led that both years, I led the League in strikeouts.

Dan: You led the league in strikeouts?

Ball: I won in walks too, probably.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: Branch Rickey used to say that if you can strike out more than you walk, why, you have some advantage.

Dan: How did you get the nickname "Wild Bill"?

Bill: (Gesturing)

Dan: That's it—by walking.

Bill: By in and low, which you call it—control—in the early days, but ah, ah, a power pitcher always has a little more trouble with control than a—

Dan: Uh huh—now, did you ever pitch against the Yankees?

Bill: Oh, in spring training, yes.

Dan: Spring training, but not in the regular season.

Bill: No, because they're—

Dan: Same league.

Bill: They're in a different league.

Dan: Different league—yeah.

Bill: I pitched against some—quite a few of the Yankees, in fact. I started the first All-Star game in 1933—Babe Ruth hit a home run.

Dan: Off of you?

Bill: Yeah, so that's one reason.

Dan: Who were some of the other members of your team that, ah, that ah won the Series?

Bill: Oh, ah, in the thirties, '30, '31, Jim Dowling, Frankie Frisch, Pepper Martin, ah, Chick Hafey and Charlie Delbert and Jess Haines, Burley Grimes, and in ‘34 it was the Dean brothers, Paul and Dizzy Dean, Pepper Martin, Joe Medwick, Vern Lasabe—Frankie Frisch was the manager, Leo Durocher was shortstop, Rip Collins, Jim Collins was first base.

Dan: This is on the—

Bill: The ‘34 team.

Dan: ‘34 team.

Bill: '34 team.

Dan: The Cardinals.

Bill: Yeah, we beat Detroit then.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: Mickey Cochron caught and managed Detroit, but ah, I roomed with Jim Bottemly and Joe Medwick. Bill Christy and an awful lot of those fellas who were on those both teams are in the Hall of Fame.

Dan: Yeah.

Bill: Yeah—quite a few of them.

Dan: Have you ever been considered for the Hall of Fame?

Bill: Oh, gee, they're standing in line waiting.

Dan: Standing in line.

Bill: They's so many of them.

Dan: Yeah—any highlights stand out in your mind at all, as far as your baseball career?

Bill: Well of course the, ah, World Series games, and in 1930 I pitched a game in Brooklyn, we went, we went into Brooklyn 1/2 game out of first place for a 3 game series, and I pitched against Dazzy Vance, who was quite a pitcher.

Dan: Yeah.

Bill: So I pitched the first game and won—it went 10 innings and I beat him 1 to 0, and they said that was the game that won the pennant for us, because we won the next two games against Philadelphia, and we came back to St. Louis and the season was over at St. Louis, so ah that was quite a one that I remember, you know, especially against a pitcher like Vance—he was one of the real power pitchers in my days.

Dan: Yeah, uh huh—have you received any awards at all, Bill?

Bill: Oh nothing for, ah—

Dan: Any honors or anything like that?

Bill: Nothing, only what all the other fellas would get for being on the team—you got a World Series ring. [Shows it to Dan on finger]

Dan: Is that your World Series Ring?

Bill: That's a 1934 World Series Ring.

Dan: Uh huh—I've never seen one. Don't take it off, Bill—leave it on—don't take it off.

Bill: You can see a little better, and when we were out, ah, in—

Dan: You must have received, you must have received 3 of these.

Bill: Yeah—we got this. [Shows Dan his watch].

Dan: This is a wristwatch.

Bill: Yeah, in '76 we went to St. Louis for a reunion of the team that won the first pennant and World Series in St. Louis history.

Dan: Is that right?

Bill: And, ah, each got Longines Wittnauer from that reunion, and then I have a picture upstairs, a painting, from a photograph I got in '73—a reunion of the fellas in the first All-Star game.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: And, ah, you get a lot of, quite a few.

Dan: The fact you got three World Series rings—that's really something.

Bill: Well it is, because it has to have some measure of luck, you know, to be on the teams that are—I know a lot of the fellas that were great players that didn't even play on one team, not on our team. That's the way I happened to, ah, and at that time all the players would come up through the farm system. Today they, they come free agents and so on—we didn't have any of that.

Dan: Yeah—what do you think about the salaries that they're getting today, Bill?

Bill: Well I think—

Dan: Do you think they're worth it?

Bill: Well of course nothing is, ah.

Dan: Everything is inflation, you know, today.

Bill: It isn't what you're worth actually, it's, ah, if they can pay them, if they can make enough money.

Dan: In other words a drawing card, right?

Bill: If they can hit, why, they must deserve it—they couldn't get it, that's true.

Dan: Yeah.

Bill: Things are different today, ah, in everything, is different.

Dan: ‘Course you've got to consider the fact that when, ah, when the height of your career there wasn't any television.

Bill: No.

Dan: Which is, ah, a big item.

Bill: Oh, that’s made the—ah, television and, ah, night games.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: They didn't have that—why I played most of my, ah, ah, during the Depression.

Dan: Right, right.

Bill: And every city you'd see, there'd be people hadn't seen anything ’til they see the soup lines. Those people were really hungry.

Dan: Uh huh. Now when you, ah, got out of service you went right to Ozalid—you worked there for 20 years and you're getting a pension from them, of course. Did you do any coaching at all in the 20 years that you worked?

Bill: No, the only thing I coached was the Little League when they first had the Little League team—League in Johnson City.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: And, ah, they asked me if I’d take over, and ah, we, ah, spent a lot of time with them because the kids wanted to play. We played twice a week, ah, but they wanted to have another game on Saturday, and so we used to play and, ah, we won the pennant—went as far as Liverpool, we played some of the finals—the semifinals in Liverpool.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: We got beat in Liverpool 2 to 1, but we had a good time.

Dan: You mentioned when Branch Rickey was watching you in batting practice, was that in Syracuse or was that out in St. Louis?

Bill: No, that was in Bradenton.

Dan: Bradenton.

Bill: Florida, spring training.

Dan: Oh, in spring training.

Bill: Spring training.

Dan: I see, I see.

Bill: But, ah, today everything is different of course.

Dan: Oh, sure.

Bill: In those days you'd know who, ah, one of the stars were, but today you wouldn't know—they all come out together at once—you wouldn't know who's the star and who's the rookie. The rookie is liable to have a good big a car as the stars—maybe he got a bonus for signing or something like that, and ah, everything was different—even the ballparks are all tremendous today.

Dan: Yeah.

Bill: Ah, the ballparks you knew, the ballpark in Philadelphia in the National League was so small they called it "Baker Bowl.” It was, ah, very small—the seating capacity was nothing. The Shibe park was a much better park, that was in the American League park.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: But today everything—in St. Louis is a big beautiful locker room, wall to wall carpeting all on it.

Dan: Oh, sure.

Bill: Beautiful showers.

Dan: Yeah.

Bill: And the trainer has a room with all of his equipment.

Dan: Yeah.

Bill: And the equipment manager, the only fellow I know on the team, Butch Yatheman—and he was a bat boy when I was there—now he is the equipment manager, so he's been there 50 years and, ah, all that, ah, ah, of course the traveling is different, everything is by plane today.

Dan: Right, right. Of course they play, probably, ah, more games per season too, now?

Bill: 160, 160—they used to play 154.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: 160 or 62. Ah, I don't think there's as much togetherness now as there were at that time, ‘cause we were together on on the train and fellas had time to talk, and you'd talk baseball even in the lobbies of the hotel in the evening, it was great for down in and hear the veterans talk, you know.

Dan: Sure, sure.

Bill: I don't know how they do that as much now, because, why, they go from St. Louis to Chicago in a couple of hours and, you know, didn't have much time to speak—you're just in the ballpark and when you're in the clubhouse.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: But, ah, sometimes we'd go from St. Louis, ah, at least once a year to Boston—Reds back too.

Dan: Mhmm. There was so much publicity over Maris breaking, ah, Ruth's homerun record that one year, but he played in more games than Ruth did.

Bill: Oh yes, they all did so, do—

Dan: Actually it isn't, it isn't a fair comparison, is it?

Bill: Well, ah, you shouldn't—it wouldn't be, because and then you'd have to look at how many walks did each get—intentional walks?

Dan: Yeah.

Bill: You can't hit if you're walked—that's for sure, and the same with Hank Aaron. I mean they keep in more games.

Dan: Yes, yes.

Bill: But if you ever checked the number of times they were walked intentionally—but that's the difference.

Dan: Yeah, yeah.

Bill: In my, my—those fellows deserve all the credit, you know, they—

Dan: Oh sure.

Bill: —A lot of credit, but I always thought, ah, ah, the home run hitter—I will always remember—Babe Ruth.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: I mean he looked so much the part.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: He looked, ah, ah, when he was at bat—everything stopped—came to a standstill, you know. Everybody wanted to see him swing, but he did swing because he was one that say, he looked good striking out.

Dan: Yeah. (Laughter).

Bill: You know, aren't many that said looked that good.

Dan: Right, right.

Bill: That's quite a compliment when they say you look good striking out, and oh, when we came north we always played exhibition games—now they go direct from the, ah—

Dan: Spring training.

Bill: Spring training, right, back, ah, their home base.

Dan: Right.

Bill: But we used to play all over the south—if we ever come in, ah, for instance, some of our fellows would hit a long ball. Gee, they say some native here said, “Oh, the Yankees were in here last week and he hit one, he hit one that far, you know.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: Way over there, 500 feet.

Dan: What was your best pitch, ah, Bill?

Bill: I had a fastball and a curve.

Dan: Fastball and curve, uh huh.

Bill: Yeah, and I wasn't quite as tall, as big as some of those fellows, but we had a fellow on the team—Paul Derringer, he was 6’3" or 4".

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: But I could throw as hard, so you make by.

Dan: You lack one thing—you make up on another.

Bill: Yeah, I could be, ah, throw hard and ah, have a terrific curve.

Dan: Uh huh—well you've got a lot of nice memories, Bill.

Bill: Oh the nice part about it, be able to look back and—

Dan: Reminisce.

Bill: When we, ah, like in ‘76 we went to St. Louis, there was 7 then out of the 27—there'd be 27 on the team.

Dan: Only 7 left out of 27?

Bill: Right.

Dan: Is that right?

Bill: Out of the first Pennant winning team—7.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: So they, they fade away.

Dan: You look good, though, Bill. Did you just get back from Florida?

Bill: That’s right—I had a little tan.

Dan: Good.

Bill: But, ah, we missed a good winter here, I guess.

Dan: (Laughter) You picked a dandy.

Bill: Well, it was bad all over the country.

Dan: Yeah, yeah.

Bill: It was, it was the wind every day and a chill.

Dan: Right, right.

Bill: But the sun was warm.

Dan: Uh huh—now you belong to St. Patrick's Church, Bill.

Bill: Yes.

Dan: Uh huh, but do you belong to any clubs, any fraternal organizations or anything like that?

Bill: Let’s see, I belong to the Elks, Knights of Columbus 4th Degree, ah, Veterans, Clinton Street—the 1st Ward Legion.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: Let’s see what else—the, ah, Baseball Players’ Association. I guess that's it.

Dan: That's it—now do you have a reunion every year?

Bill: Oh no—just for certain special things.

Dan: Just, just, yeah—‘course, just being 7 of you left, why—

Bill: Oh, that's first time we ever got together.

Dan: Yeah, yeah.

Bill: But ah, well, I've been out to Houston a couple of times—in New York too—the Stadium, and I’ve been out to St. Louis 6 or 7 times.

Dan: Is that right, yeah?

Bill: Because they'd have a reunion for all the different teams—

Dan: Right.

Bill: —that won a pennant. It's all been great.

Dan: Yeah—did you ever pitch at any old timers’ games down in Yankee Stadium? They usually have an old timers.

Bill: That's when I was out there, it was 1962 or 3.

Dan: 1962 or 3.

Bill: Yeah, but I didn't care about going out to pitch, because some of the fellows were coaching and so on, and they were in better shape than some of the older players.

Dan: Yeah.

Bill: Some of the players would get, ah, what's the use if you didn't get injured during your playing days? Why do it when you're a senior?

Dan: Right, right—you never had any serious injuries, did you, playing, Bill?

Bill: No, I was fortunate.

Dan: Oh, you were lucky.

Bill: Yeah, yeah, I was able to go through all that without.

Dan: Right.

Bill: And, ah, we don't get a pension—it didn't start until ‘45.

Dan: No pension plan?

Bill: Now they get a pension in 5 years.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: I played about 11 years.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: I have a lifetime pass.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill : A silver lifetime pass—I've never used it. I hang on to it. I'd go, ah, but I don't know any of the players now.

Dan: No, no, you're going back quite a few years.

Bill: Yeah.

Dan: Yeah.

Bill: If I lived a lot closer I'd go, but I'd drive down for overnight or something like that just for—

Dan: Well, is there anything else you'd like to tell me, Bill, or anything you can think of?

Bill: No, before I got hit with a respiratory ailment in ‘69. Before that I used to play once in a while with Bishop Harrison when he was Monsignor.

Dan: When he was known as McGee. (Laughter).

Bill: Oh, I saw him down to the Broome Open last year, you know, when he was playing with Bob Hope and, ah, what's his name? The Merry Mex, ah, Lee Trevino.

Dan: Lee Trevino, yeah.

Bill: And ah, I followed him around for awhile—they had some fun—you know, they're all, and ah—

Dan: You mentioned you played with Father Harrison now.

Bill: Playing golf, yeah.

Dan: Oh, playing golf, yeah. You know he used to be Assistant Pastor—no, was it? Yeah, he used to be over at St. Mary's and he used to play with Father O'Brien, and it came out in the paper, of course it wouldn't be Father Harrison but he'd be playing under the name of McGee.

Bill: Yeah, but he taught me, he said he played out to Notre Dame—he was on the ball team out there, but he had a chance to go and really try in Minor League if he had a chance to go up, but he was going to do something else, but he used to be around the ballpark up there when I was playing up in Syracuse—old Star park.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: I used to live up on Tipperary Hill when I was in Syracuse.

Dan: Tipperary Hill.

Bill: Yeah.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: Up on, I think it was Hamilton Street—sometimes I forget, rather I stayed with people named Hamilton—it sounds like it was a street.

Dan: Yeah.

Bill: Up on Tipperary Hill.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: The green was always on top.

Dan: What was this farm team, this St. Louis farm team called up at Syracuse?

Bill: Stars.

Dan: Stars.

Bill: St. Louis Stars—the Syracuse Stars.

Dan: Syracuse Stars, yeah.

Bill: Shanks Shaughnessey was the manager one year up there and then Barney Shotten was the manager in '27 and he—we had quite a good team. He went to Philadelphia after and managed for a few years—he managed Brooklyn.

Dan: Now who was managing when you won the series—those 3 years?

Bill: Oh, Hornsby was managing them in ‘26.

Dan: That was the farm league.

Bill: No.

Dan: Wasn't that the farm league—when you were down in Texas?

Bill: No, oh, that was Snyder, Frank Snyder was managing the Houston team.

Dan: I see.

Bill: In St. Louis then, in ‘26, Hornsby was the manager.

Dan: I see.

Bill: And in ’30 Gabby Street, and in ’31 Gabby Street, and in ’34 Frankie Frisch.

Dan: Frankie Frisch, uh huh.

Bill: And he was killed a few years ago, coming north when a train came.

Dan: Yes, yes, I read about that.

Bill: Car accident—he was quite a ball player, he was.

Dan: Yeah.

Bill: God, he was a good one.

Dan: Yeah.

Bill: And Medwick, 2 years ago I think he died.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: Had a heart attack, and he was working with the Cardinals—he was the batting instructor.

Dan: Uh huh.

Bill: Well I think I've covered pretty well, haven't I, ah?

Dan: Oh that's fine, Bill. I'll, if you like, I'll play it back for you.

Bill: OK.

Dan: Now Bill, you mentioned that you, ah, played in the 1st All Star game in 1933.

Bill: Right.

Dan: Now could you name the members of the team?

Bill: No, I don't think so, I—

Dan: The National League team.

Bill: Yeah, I may be able to name most of those fellows, but ah, ah, to go through to name the American League, I don't.

Dan: No, just your own team, your National League All-Stars. You were pitching, right?

Bill: Yeah, and Gabby Street was catcher—I mean this is the starting, because they kept entering.

Dan: Yeah.

Bill: Gabby Street catching, Bill Terry was playing first, Frankie Frisch second—now if I can get the shortstop, ah, skip that for a minute. Pie Traynor was playing third, ah, Chick Hafey, Paul Waner, Mel Ott I think.

Dan: Mel Ott.

Bill: Mhmm, I know they played sometime during the game.

Dan: Yeah, right, but that was the first World Series.

Bill: All-Stars.

Dan: All-Stars, rather, first All-Star game. OK, well thank you very much, Bill.

Date of Interview



O'Neil, Dan


Hallahan, William A.


44:13 Minutes

Date of Digitization



Broome County Oral History Project

Subject LCSH

Hallahan, William A. -- Interviews; Broome County (N.Y.) -- History; Binghamton (N.Y.); Groton (N.Y.); Baseball players -- Interviews; St. Louis Cardinals (Baseball team); World Series (Baseball); General Aniline & Film Corporation, Division of Ozalid; Little League baseball

Rights Statement

This audio file and digital image may only be used for educational purposes. Please cite as: Broome County Oral History Project, Special Collections, Binghamton University Libraries, Binghamton University, State University of New York. For usage beyond fair use please contact the Binghamton University Libraries Special Collections for more information.



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Collection Description

The Broome County Oral History Project was conceived and administered by the Senior Services Unit of the Office for the Aging. Funding for this project was provided by the Broome County Office of Employment and Training (C.E.T.A.), with additional funding from the Senior Service Unit of the National Council on Aging and Broome… More

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“Interview with William A. Hallahan,” Digital Collections, accessed February 27, 2024,