Highland Museum to feature Carpenter#039;s memorabilia collection

Published 12:00 am Saturday, March 26, 2005

ASHLAND, Ky. - John Carpenter has the largest sports memorabilia collection in the world. If anyone wants to see for themselves, they'll have the chance starting Friday.

Carpenter's collection of more than 5,000 items including 3,000 baseball souvenirs will be on display at the Highlands Museum on Winchester Avenue during an exhibit called, "Baseball: Springtime at the Stadium."

The display will be open to the public from April 1 through Sept. 6.

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"It's good for people to see. I'm a people person and I want people young and old to see it," Carpenter said. "It's really growing. People around the nation know about it and send a lot of things when I ask."

Autographed photos and other items are included in the collection. Carpenter's favorite item is Ruth's 552nd home run baseball which was sold at Yankee Stadium in 1927 and autographed by the Babe.

His collection has more than baseball. There are other items from football, basketball, softball, tennis, etc. It was been given the distinction of the World Record Collection of Sports Memorabilia as proclaimed by Ripley's Believe It or Not.

Other items have been signed by Pete Rose, President George Bush, umpire John McSherrie, Negro League players Satchel Paige and Cool Papa Bell, Mickey Mantle, Roger Maris, Joe DiMaggio and Ken Griffey Jr.

"There's so much stuff, I can't keep count of it. I get new things all the time. I'm really excited about it," Carpenter said.

Carpenter has been the subject of a feature on ESPN and ESPN2's Cold Pizza. Crews from ESPN2 are scheduled to make a return trip this spring to do an additional interview with Carpenter regarding his collection.

Museum tours are from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. Monday viewings are by appointment only.

Admission is $4 for adults, $3.50 for seniors, students and children. Members and children under 2 are admiteed free.

For further information, call 606-329-8888, visit the web page www.highlandmuseum.com or e-mail highlandsmuseum@yahoo.com

The event is sponsored by Don Hall GM SuperCenter. A ribbon cutting ceremony will be at 5 p.m. Friday. Refreshments will be served.