Josh Gibson
© Photo provided with permission from the Josh Gibson Foundation. All rights reserved.

It’s speculated that Josh Gibson, the Homestead Grays star buried at Allegheny Cemetery in Lawrenceville, could have hit as many as 800 home runs, though record keeping in the Negro Leagues was inconsistent at the time.

The Josh Gibson Foundation is presenting a 50th Anniversary Hall of Fame Celebration this summer to mark when Pittsburgh’s legendary slugger was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown in New York.

Image courtesy of the Josh Gibson Foundation.

Events include:

● July 20: Washington Wild Things Frontier All-Star Baseball Game, Washington Wild Things Park in Washington, Pa. Players will wear Negro Leagues jerseys corresponding to their local home team.

● Aug. 3: Unveiling of the Josh Gibson Hall of Fame Plaque at PNC Park during the Pirates vs. Brewers game. It’s an opportunity for fans to see Gibson’s Hall of Fame plaque on loan from the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown

● Aug. 4: Unveiling of the Josh Gibson Heritage Park at Station Square.

● Aug. 5: 50th Anniversary Hall of Fame Luncheon at PNC Park featuring the presentation of The Josh Gibson Golden Award.

● Aug. 19-21: Negro Leagues Youth Classic at Josh Gibson Field in the Hill District.

● Sept. 9: Negro Leagues Heritage Night at PNC Park.

“The 50th Anniversary Celebration of Josh Gibson’s induction into the National Baseball Hall of Fame is a remarkable milestone that we are looking forward to honoring and celebrating,” says Sean Gibson, executive director of the foundation and the player’s great-grandson. “It is clear that Josh Gibson’s astounding lifetime achievements and the obstacles he overcame as a Black baseball player have transcended time and are still felt today.”

Proceeds from these events support youth baseball, after-school and mentoring programs for disadvantaged youth, and cultural and education efforts.

A lifelike figure of Josh Gibson in the Western Pennsylvania Sports Museum. Photo courtesy of the Heinz History Center.

The Josh Gibson Foundation was founded to provide the type of opportunities that Gibson never enjoyed with the creation of facilities and baseball fields dedicated to the youth of the Pittsburgh community. The nonprofit is based at the Ammon Recreation Center in the Hill District. All education and recreation programs are available free of charge.

Michael Machosky

Michael Machosky is a writer and journalist with 18 years of experience writing about everything from development news, food and film to art, travel, books and music. He lives in Greenfield with his wife, Shaunna, and 10-year old son.