Kissin’ Kuzzins: Reminders of Little League baseball days

Published 12:54 pm Wednesday, April 18, 2018

By Dickie Dixon

For Posterity’s Eyes April birthdays: 19th:  Mary Blount Woods, Esmelda Baez, Adal Jan, Candice Marie Wallace, Patsy (Gilbert) Wallace, Anna Royce McKay, Macaulay Parker, Lundyn Ford, Tom Hilton, Charlene Medley 20th:  Vernon Horace 21st:  Billie (Pate) Grunden, Blanca Peabody 22nd:  Jerrett Atteberry 22nd:  Linda Marshall Welch, Jeanette (Shofner) Thomas, Jeanette (Morgan) Hudnall 23rd:  Rodney Delano 24th:  Shawn Michael Butler II, Lane Taylor 25th:  Dollie Tucker 26th:  Steve Fuller 27th:  Roy Dusan 28th:  Shawn Michael Butler

Save the Date (1)Jasper resident Billie Grunden will discuss “Your Family in Old Newspapers,” when she speaks to the Angelina County Genealogical Society at 4:00 p.m. in the Community Meeting Room of Kurth Memorial Library on 702 South Raguet Street in Lufkin, Texas (75904).  For more information, please call Dickie Dixon at (936) 240-8378, or e-mail him at

(2)Mr. Hankla will discuss “The Fredonia Rebellion,” when he speaks to the Daughters of the Republic of Texas at the Cullen House in San Augustine, Texas at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 19, 2018. For more information, call Rosemary Blackstock or the San Augustine Chamber of Commerce.

(3)A request from the author:  On Saturday, April 21, 2018 I will be speaking on “Where the Houses Went” at the Camden Sawmill Reunion in Camden, Texas.  If you or your family rented one of the sawmill houses or know someone who did, or you or your family bought one of the sawmill houses or know someone who did, please contact me at (936) 240-8378 or

Two reminders of my Little League baseball days Sunday, April 15th marked two very special events in the life of major league baseball.  In 1947 Jackie Robinson broke the color line, when he made his debut for the Brooklyn Dodgers as the first African-American in recent days to play for a major league baseball team. (If you’re interested, that story is played out in motion picture form in the movie entitled 42, the number of his uniform.)

Closer to home, Schoolboy Rowe began his major league career as a pitcher with the Detroit Tigers; he was brought up from the minor league team the Beaumont Exporters, where he only played one season.  I became acquainted with him through my mother, and, after her death, her diary, which I inherited.  She attended El Dorado High School with him; he was two years behind her in school.  I spoke on her there to the Union County Genealogical Society at the Barton Library and later spoke on him at the college there.  He was quite an athlete.  His career deserves more attention than it has received.   

This date made me reflect on the year I began playing Little League baseball on the team my Uncle Truitt and James Masters coached.  That team had Ronnie and Roy Smith on it, Burt Mandeville, Doug Orman, and Bruce Main on it.  We practiced in a vacant lot on Picardy Lane off of Southwood Drive on the west side of Lufkin, Texas.  I probably didn’t even weigh seventy pounds at ten, but I was fast on the base paths and walked many times. On the way to practice, my Mom let me load up on a chewing gum called Chum Gum;  each package was only a penny for two pieces.   It was a great experience playing baseball with the guys, which I continued to do until my Pony League years.

Yes sir! April 15th provided me with two reminders of my Little League baseball days!

For book reviews/notices please send a complimentary copy to Kissin’ Kuzzins P. O. Box 151001 Lufkin TX 75915-1001

Send your queries to Kissin’ Kuzzins P. O. Box 15-1001 Lufkin TX 75901 by email to or by phone to (936) 240-8378