The Library of Congress has acquired the TV and
radio sports broadcast collection of John Miley. Known, appropriately enough,
as The Miley Collection, it includes over 6,000 recordings of pre-1972
amateur and pro events in virtually every sport including Baseball, hockey,
football, basketball, boxing, car and horse racing, tennis and golf.
That includes the voices of iconic announcers from Dizzy
Dean and Red Grange to Ted Husing and Red Barber.
"American life throughout most of the 20th century was
immeasurably enriched by the radio and television broadcasts of amateur and
professional sports events that had great national significance," said
Librarian of Congress James H. Billington in announcing the
acquisition. "Unfortunately, many of those broadcasts were never recorded
or otherwise saved for posterity. With the acquisition of the
John Miley Collection, the Library of Congress now will be able to ensure
the archival preservation of a collection that substantially documents the historical
record of the nation's sports broadcast history prior to 1972, when sound
recordings were not protected by federal copyright law."
Miley has been collecting broadcasts since 1947,
beginning with a wire recorder and including trading and acquiring with a network
of other avid sports broadcast collectors.
Miley said in the announcement that he has been looking
for a while to place the collection. "I started collecting broadcasts with the
idea that I would have something to do when I retired, and that would be to
listen to the tons of audio that I would end up recording down through the
years," he said in a statement. "It didn't take long for me to
realize that others wanted to hear this, too. I look forward to helping
the Library identify other sports collectors who also want to share their
collections with this venerable institution."
The collection will be housed and cataloged at the
library's Culpeper, Va., campus outside Washington and eventually be available
at its Capitol Hill reading room and online.
Among the TV and radio treasures in the trove, according to the library:
Harold Arlin's 1920 inaugural broadcast on KDKA in
The final game of the Brooklyn Dodgers on September 29, 1957 in Philadelphia
with the incomparable Vin Scully at the mike.
Joe Louis vs. Billy Conn heavyweight championship fights in
1941 and 1946.
Sandy Koufax's first no-hitter in 1962.
The record-breaking game in November 1966 between the
Redskins and Giants in which their combined scores totaled the largest number
of points ever scored in an NFL game.
Jim Brown's exploits in the 1957 Cotton Bowl.
Wilt Chamberlain's last game at Kansas
and the fourth quarter of his 100-point game as a pro.
A nearly complete collection of the Rose Bowl games since
Arnold Palmer winning his first professional tournament.
Legendary sportscaster Curt Gowdy covering football and
basketball for the University of Oklahoma
in the 1940s.
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