Give Thanks for This

turkeysBesides good health, good friends, and a marvelous turkey dinner, I could thank God on Thanksgiving for helping me keep up with my weekly deadlines for my book Colorful Characters of St. Louis. You’ll be thankful next fall when you read it. My cast of characters is expanding.

Ray Hartmann

The latest folks I’m writing about include Ray Hartmann of Channel 9’s Donnybrook and St. Louis Magazine; and George Simon, who’s worked at fruit and vegetable stands at Soulard Market for nearly seventy years.

Eddie Gaedel at bat

I’m also spending much of my time on local athletes, including two local baseball team owners known for their oddball ways. One was Chris Von der Ahe, known for his flamboyant management style at the St. Louis Browns in the last two decades of the Nineteenth Century. The team became the St. Louis Cardinals. The second colorful owner, Bill Veeck, owned the American League St. Louis Browns at the start of the 1950s. Among his stunts was bringing in a midget named Eddie Gaedel for one uprourious at-bat.

von der ahe
Chris Von der Ahe

I wish I could tell you more, but I can’t. You’ll have to wait to read it.


Published by Jim Merkel

Reedy Press published four of my books, Hoosiers and Scrubby Dutch: St. Louis's South Side, 2010; Beer, Brats, and Baseball: St. Louis Germans, 2012; The Making of an Icon: The Dreamers, The Schemers, and the Hard Hats Who Built the Gateway Arch; and the Second Edition of Hoosiers and Scrubby Dutch: St. Louis's South Side, 2014. They're available in bookstores and online. For an autographed copy, send a check for $21.50 made out to Jim Merkel, to Jim Merkel, 4216 Osceola St., St. Louis, MO 63116.

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