On November 21, 1920, halfway up the hill on Sixth Street in Donora (just a few blocks from the location of our museum), in a modest two story house, Lukasz and Mary Musial added to their family when Mary gave birth to a son they would name Stanislaw Franciszek (Stanley Frank) Musial.
Polish immigrant Lukasz would start his young son Stanley, nicknamed Stashu or Stash (stush), in athletics with the local Polish Falcons - Nest 247, a Polish social club that promoted physical fitness and participated in track and field and gymnastics meets around the northeast United States against other Falcon clubs. It is here that Stash or Stanley received his first athletic uniform as well as the coordination, timing and strength that would set the foundation and propel him into two other sports as a young teen: basketball and baseball.
Musial excelled in basketball well enough to where he had the opportunity to attend the University of Pittsburgh on a scholarship. Lukasz was determined that his son would go to college and get an education to escape the hard life of working in the local steel mills. In the photo below, Stan Musial is sitting second from the left in a Donora High School basketball team photo.
As a young man, the St. Louis Cardinals drafted Musial as a pitcher, who was also a fairly good batsman. After some early arm trouble, Musial settled in as an outfielder/first baseman and would go on to terrorize major league pitching and become one of the best hitters of all time earning his nickname of "Stan The Man" and a spot in baseball's Hall of Fame. Of the over 19,000 men that played professional baseball, Musial is often considered in the top ten players. While Musial was considered one of the all time greats as a sportsman, the trait that makes Donora most proud, is the fact that he is considered an even better human being.
Learn more about Stan "The Man" Musial and his involvement in the Polish Falcons, basketball, and baseball, as well as his military career and acceptance of the 2010 Presidential Medal of Freedom at the Donora Historical Society.
Click on our site's Merchandise tab to see some of the Stan Musial throwback jerseys and books being sold by the Society and order yours today.
On Thursday, June 15, 2017 at 11:00 a.m., Smog Museum archivist and curator Brian Charlton will present Stan "The Man" Musial at the West End Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh at the West End.
Please contact the West End Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh with any questions.