“I don’t think I can fully appreciate what his life was like,” said Congressman Chris Gibson, whose district includes Cooperstown. “We all have challenges in life. I know I have had my share of challenges, but none of them compare to the challenges he faced in his life.
Gibson entered a proclamation honoring Fowler into the official Congressional record, and presented the proclamation to Cooperstown Mayor Jeff Katz on Saturday — one of an armful that Katz received. Gov. Andrew Cuomo sent his Mohawk Valley representative, Sonny Greco, with one. State Senator Jim Seward gave Katz one too. So did Thorn and Gates, on behalf of MLB and the Hall of Fame.
Katz credited HOF senior curator Tom Schieber with enlightening him about Fowler’s role in history.
“I certainly think of myself as a serious baseball fan but it was not until I moved to Cooperstown that I learned the story of Bud Fowler,” Katz said.
Schieber suggested naming a street in Fowler’s honor, but Katz said he thought it would be “a tough sled” to rename an existing one.
Trustee Cyndy Falk, through her research, found out that the entrance to Doubleday Field was actually an official street on the map.
“So now we had not only a street looking for a name, but a name looking for a street,” he said.
The attempt to bring public attention to Fowler appears to be working. The New York Times ran a feature on him this week. A representative of National Public Radio attended Saturday’s unveiling.
The sign marking Fowler Way was unveiled by Cooperstown varsity baseball players Ethan Bliss, Sawyer Haney and Nico Knull on Saturday. They wore their CCS uniforms for the event, but stitched across the back of each jersey was the name “Fowler.”