Winthrop University Galleries

Artists and Civic Engagement (ACE) Projects

For Immediate Release / Jan. 12, 2009
Contact: Tom Stanley

521 All-StarsChampionship Story of Baseball and Community Opens at Clinton College

Byron Baldwin Gallery Talk / Reception - Tuesday, January 27 at 7 p.m. - Clinton College, Rock Hill, SC

ACE Projects presents a new exhibition at Clinton Junior College's Dalton Gallery. A photo-documentary project, The 521 All-Stars: Championship Story of Baseball and Community opens to the public January 12 and continues through March 13, 2009. A public reception and gallery talk by photographer Byron Baldwin is scheduled for Tuesday, January 27 at 7 p.m. The public is invited free of charge.

Based on the 1998 book The 521 All-Stars: A Championship Story of Baseball and Community, this photography exhibit depicts the game in its purest form: scrap metal base lines, rotten wood bleachers, teams made up of brothers, fathers and sons, and most importantly, fellowship within the community.

Until Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier in 1947, major league baseball was the pastime for white players and fans.  Segregated and separated, black players were forced to form leagues of their own. In many respects, the documentary photography that comprises this exhibition illustrates an example of the social history, and continuing reality, that has been played out in South Carolina.

In 1996, author Frye Gaillard was driving north on Route 521 in Sumter County when he discovered a homemade ballpark and stopped to take pictures of the players.  He and his artistic partner, photographer Byron Baldwin, spent the next season and a half watching and studying the Gamecock Baseball League of Rembert, S.C.  The teams of the Gamecock League are comprised only of African-Americans.

The Dalton Gallery at Clinton Junior College is located at 1029 Crawford Road in Rock Hill, S.C. Gallery hours are Monday-Thursday, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information please call 803-327-7402 (ext 226) or 803-323-2653.

The 521 All-Stars is an exhibition from the Traveling Exhibits program of the South Carolina State Museum. ACE Projects at Clinton are supported by Jo Sherrill Dickert, Gay Randolph and Robert Breakfield. Additional support for ACE Projects has been provided by Becca and Harry Dalton, Clinton Junior College, Winthrop's College of Visual and Performing Arts, and Winthrop University Galleries. For more information about ACE Projects call 803/323-2653 or email