A GREAT view of the field at AT&T Park in Chattanooga during their pre-season open house!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Dr. Ray Doswell- Curator of the NLBM

The Following is the complete email I received from Dr. Ray Doswell concerning the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum:

Thanks for the note. You can use whatever you like from these emails. We thank you visiting the NLBM and your interest in the Negro Leagues.

I think you just caught us on a bad day. I do regret that your visit was disappointing. You did catch us not at our best and in a bit of transition. The exhibits themselves were created in 1997, so we are constantly trying to update, repair, and improve things. We had been at that time gearing up for a major event in July; the official national postage stamp release with Thurgood Marshall, Jr. as the presiding officer. Several bulbs were not only being changed in the days and weeks that followed, but being switched to more energy efficient “green” bulbs as well. Much of the updating began soon after your visit to the NLBM. In addition, the computer kiosks were also being repaired as well.

As for the film and locker exhibitions, I truly believe these were oversights from the VERY new staff people we hired, who simply had not turned the systems on properly. I am not usually there on Sunday’s so I was not notified. Our new staff additions are a sign of growth, and there will be these minor growing pains. However, they should not come and damage the experience of any visitor. This is something being addressed by leadership. Ultimately, exhibition issues fall to me and I am sorry we were not at optimal levels for your experience.

Speaking of growth, you alluded in your blog to financial issues at the museum. The NLBM, like so many museums around the country, has its challenges in this economy. But let me assure your readers that much of what has been in the press has been overblown and in my opinion, and somewhat irresponsible. We are celebrating as an institution 20 years in 2010. We are stable financially and sustainable. The leadership is confident in the future direction of the institution. Still, the museum always welcomes the help of interested fans, players, and companies. Membership is vital to our existence and folks can join at http://www.nlbm.com/.

If you had come the day before, you could also have caught Willie Mays biographer Jim Hirsch for a program at the museum. It was a great program and one of many that we have had this summer and hope to continue. We encourage everyone to follow us on the web and especially on Facebook, where we have close to 4,200 followers.

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