A foreman of the San Jose Mercury Herald Press Room for forty-one years (1893 – 1934), John (Jack) Martin Graham was one of the valley’s best known baseball writers. Writing columns in the Mercury Herald, he promoted amateur baseball, even arranging games and settling disputes. In the early 1920s, he encouraged readers to visit Japantown to watch the Japanese community’s team at a time when anti-Asian sentiment was strong.
Jack also enjoyed composing, and he published two songs, My Mariposa Lily (1930) and We’ll Fight for Yankee Doodle (1917). The sheet music for both songs are housed in the California Room’s sheet music collection.
Jack retired as press foreman in 1934 at the age of sixty-two to devote himself full time to promoting and writing about baseball. On the evening of May 28, 1934, he suffered a fatal heart attack at the typewriter. He stumbled out of his office to the sidewalk on Lightston Alley where he was found a short time later.
There were a number of memorials given, and the following year on May 17, 1935, the City of San Jose opened a baseball stadium dedicated to his memory. At the dedication ceremony, Jack’s son Malcolm placed a memorial plaque on its pedestal which read: GRAHAM FIELD, Dedicated to the Memory of JACK GRAHAM, 1872 – 1934, Father of Sandlot Baseball of Santa Clara Valley. Located on Willow Street near First Street, the grandstands burnt down in 1947. The land was then subdivided with the addition of a new street named Graham Avenue. Jack is buried at Oak Hill Memorial Park in San Jose.
Further Reading from the San Jose Public Library, California Room:
The answer is yes, though complicated, depending on how far back you want to go and what you are wanting to research.
The telephone customer was surprised to learn she didn’t have to go to the King Library but could look up articles from June 1985 to the present online (via the SJPL’s subscription to Newsbank) with her San Jose Public Library card.
The King Library has the San Jose Mercury News on microfilm dating from 1861.
See more Questions of the Week.
San Jose Mercury News (SJMN) aka Mercury News is the most popular newspaper in the city of San Jose, California. Although the newspaper had been through many developments and changes, the Mercury News is still the most popular daily publication in the City. The newspaper covers many popular sections including local, national, international news, commentary and editorials. The newspaper has many other popular sections including; business, sports, and unique sections. In addition of reading the daily Mercury News many users enjoy researching and locating family and local history information. The daily newspaper is available everyday at all SJPL branches. Moreover, San Jose Public Library provides many formats of the SJMN. In particular, at the Dr Martin Luther King Jr. library, there are the microfilm holdings for the SJMN since1861, and users can view, print, or save in their own USB flash drives using the microfilm machines
How to search or locate obituaries using library resources?
If you are researching obituaries in Bay Area or Silicon Valley, you have a variety of selected resources at Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Library and in the Web. Here are some useful resources from the library and Internet resources: