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Hammer Time in Atlanta

“Do you think it’s weird that I have so much Hank Aaron stuff?”

She looked one more time at the walls of my bedroom, so completely plastered with Hank Aaron baseball cards, magazines, and other assorted memorabilia that I could have easily been mistaken for an obsessive police detective tracking down a serial killer, if not the serial killer himself.

“Not if it makes you happy.”

These sound like the opening lines of a Harlequin romance novel for card collectors, but in my case they were real life. All collectors should be so lucky to have a Hobby spouse like Jodee, who’s supported my crazy collecting habits now for a decade.

It sounds weird to non-collectors, but I know many adult collectors who will understand this. During tough stretches in my life, I didn’t just enjoy card collecting. I needed it. The Hobby was a lot of things to me, sometimes everything, but most of all it was an escape. My Aaron collection in particular, whose origins go back now more than 40 years, may well be my life’s most consistent throughline. Whatever else was happening, good or bad, I had my Aarons.

Until last week.

The cards are gone. The magazines are gone. The “I was there” home run certificates are gone. I’ve still got some bobbleheads, a plate, and a 1970s Slurpee cup but not too much more. Were a random person to enter the basement, they might think me a mere Hank Aaron fan. Does he love the Hammer? Yeah, probably. But is he a total maniac? Hmm, doesn’t look like it.


The good news is that my loss is your gain, especially if you find yourself in Atlanta between April 2024 and September 2025. I’m honored to share with Hobby News Daily that the various items temporarily missing from my Aaron collection will occupy a small part of the upcoming “More Than Brave” Hank Aaron exhibition at the Atlanta History Center

Image source: Atlanta History Center website

Per the Center’s website, “More Than Brave will tell the story of Henry Aaron from his time in Mobile, Alabama, to his record making baseball career and his life as a leader in baseball, business, and charitable causes.” Furthermore, the exhibition “features images and artifacts from the collections of Atlanta History Center, the Atlanta Braves, the National Baseball Hall of Fame, Emory University, Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, and personal collections from throughout the United States.”

Will I miss my cards? Only every single day! Still, there is much more to collecting than having. The older I get the more I enjoy the sharing side of the Hobby, whether that means posting my “mail days” online, writing for this publication, or just sending someone some cards they’ll enjoy more than I do. The More Than Brave exhibition is just one more way–and an extremely cool one at that–to share my love of the Hammer and his collectibles with the broader public, perhaps even a chance to inspire others to add some cards of this baseball icon. 

I hope Hobby News Daily readers find a way to visit the Atlanta History Center this year or next. If they want to time their trip for the 50th anniversary of 715, they can even hit up the April 8 Braves game for a special Aaron bobblehead! And is it really too early to start making plans for the 2025 All-Star Game? Plus, the city has all kinds of amazing MLK history and the National Center for Civil and Human Rights.

Image source: Atlanta Braves promotions website

At any rate, if you make it to the Aaron exhibition, please post some pics and tag Hobby News Daily. And if you see some cool cards and wonder how their owner is surviving without them, just know managing about as well as could be expected, which is to say he’s probably on eBay at that very moment browsing the 1959 Home Run Derby listings to get him through.


2 comentários

Tony Lehman
Tony Lehman
13 de fev.

I'll have to make the nearly 2-mile trek over from my office to see it!


David Garcia
David Garcia
13 de fev.

awesome to hear part of your collection will be on display for ALL to see! How cool is that?!

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