Tall Tale or True Story?

Did Babe Ruth let his piano sink into Willis Pond after a winter party on the ice?

(written by Katina Fontes)

Babe Ruth and puppies
Babe Ruth with his daughter Dorothy.

This tale has been passed down from generation to generation in Sudbury but questions remain about its veracity. I myself have heard different versions of the story since my move to Sudbury in 2003. Did Ruth push the piano into the water in a drunken rage? Or was he having an alcohol-free party for children on the ice and was unable to move the piano back up the hill to his cottage? Want to learn more? Check out this article recently published by the New England Genealogical Society about Ruth and the piano mystery. The SHS plays a role in the investigation of this story as we have not only a collection of Ruth related artifacts and documents, but also a piece of wood veneer retrieved from the bottom of Willis Pond in 2010.

While the mystery continues, fans of baseball and Ruth can do their part in helping us learn more about the Bambino and his life in Sudbury by adopting the SHS Babe Ruth and Early 20th Century Baseball Collection of photos, objects, and documents at our upcoming 20th Century Exhibit and Benefit for Phase III of the Sudbury History Center on October 20th. On that evening we will be auctioning off the adoption of this and other collections. Adoption will help with preservation and future research and acquisitions. All donations will be recognized in the Sudbury History Center (scheduled to open in the Fall of 2019).

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