His baseball career was over and within two years, so would Lou Gehrig’s life. But the summer of 1939, he was still a vibrant man just months removed from the playing fields where he’d become a huge star. He was a celebrity even in places where there were no major league teams–like Rochester, MN.
It was there, at the home of the Mayo Clinic, where Gehrig agreed to a local radio interview that in recent days has brought his voice back to life. Posted on YouTube last fall, it received some national attention this week–but not as much as it probably should have.
The seven-minute interview with a local announcer, is in the style of the day: somewhat formal questions and somewhat formal answers, but it is a fascinating time capsule in which the Iron Horse discusses several topics including his choices as the best players to that time in history, night baseball (didn’t like it) the relatively new All-Star Game (loved it), the potential for a player’s union (no way) and even a reference to signing autographs.
A Columbia graduate, Gehrig is well spoken–almost regal–and more honest and direct that you might expect. It’s a fascinating seven minutes. If you can’t see the video player below, click here.