Yesterday I was cleaning off my desk and I came across a raincheck stub from an August 25, 1961 Minnesota Twins ball game at the old Metropolitan Stadium (a plaque in the Mall of America marks the location of the original home plate). This got me thinking about how sports have increasingly been looked at as windows into the past, even popularized lately by the movie 42: The Jackie Robinson Story. (Jules Tygiel has an exhaustive history cranked out by Oxford University Press here.)
This old Metropolitan Stadium ticket also got me thinking about how the “Met” was built south of the Twin Cities in Bloomington, in a farmer’s field, in the 1950s. This, in a broad sense, represented the increased urban flight from the city proper to the suburbs (something Adam Rome goes on at length in The Bulldozer in the Countryside — environmentalism was a reaction to the hyper development of the suburbs in post-WWII America). The Eisenhower Interstate system also allowed for Americans to bypass the central downtowns, and its gravity reshaped a variety of cities throughout the nation.
And this 1961 ticket could also — through various connections — reflect the prologue to the American Indian Movement that started in Minneapolis. This ticket is a piece of material culture that represents the white flight from the city to the suburbs. The Federal government, in turn, relocated — or attempted to — Native America (the original Americans) from the reservation to these downtown urban areas.
This leap from a 1961 rain check baseball ticket needs quite a bit more data to give more strength to the AIM connection, but when blogging in the morning, the mind tends to wonder and wander aloud with questions (this, of course, is where scholarship and history begins…).