The Green Bay Packers Hall of Fame, Inc., Tuesday announced the donation of a very rare autographed game ball from the 1934-35 Green Bay Packers by James Miller in the name of his mother, Mayme Toule Miller.
Mayme Toule Miller was the manager of the Astor Hotel from 1928 through 1938. The downtown Green Bay hotel, located on North Adams Street, was the "home away from home" during the season for many Packers.
Miller befriended many players during that time, including Roger Grove (back, 1931-35). Grove presented the ball Miller sometime during the 1935 season as a token of their appreciation for the fine accommodations the players received at the hotel. Grove had Curly Lambeau and all the players sign the ball.
Included on the ball are Pro Football Hall of Famers Lambeau, Arnie Herber, Clarke Hinkle, Don Hutson, Johnny "Blood" McNally, Mike Michalske and Cal Hubbard, with Hubbard also a member of the Baseball Hall of Fame - the only player to be a member of both halls. Also an interesting note about the autographs: the players noted their college, an unusual method of signing that is rarely seen on such items.
She gave the ball to her son, James, in 1970. The ball is believed to have been used in one of the team's first night games ever played, which took place in Milwaukee at State Fair Park.
"I'm honored to donate this ball in the name of my mother," said James Miller. "She loved her job and has many great stories from her days at the hotel. I know the Hall of Fame is the appropriate place for the ball."
For the Hall, the ball ranks among the finest memorabilia in its archives.
"We're delighted to have such a fine addition to the Hall of Fame," said Tom Murphy, the Hall's archivist and member of the board of directors. It's one of the best pieces we have. For its age and condition, it's really in great shape.
The ball will be on display beginning today in the Hall's section that features the early decades of the team.
*The Green Bay Packers Hall of Fame, Inc., is a non-profit corporation independent of the Green Bay Packers that guides the Hall as a historic national sports venue and educational resource to the Green Bay community and the state of Wisconsin. The Hall raises funds through its annual induction banquet, Golf Classic and other events to develop new exhibits and expand its archives. Historic memorabilia donated by individuals to the Hall may qualify as tax-deductible gifts.
Originally established in 1967 as a temporary display in the concourse of the Brown County Veterans Memorial Arena, the Hall moved into its own facility in 1976 near Lambeau Field. In 2003, it was relocated to a spectacular new, 25,000-square foot facility in the Lambeau Field Atrium. The Hall of Fame is open on non-game days from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Hours may vary on game days and holidays. For more information, contact the Hall of Fame at 920/569-7512, or visit the Hall online at www.LambeauField.com. *