Home
Artists & Musicians
Educators
Engineers & Architects
Government Officials
Medical Researchers
Armed Forces
Scientists
Athletes
Jackson, (Shoeless) Joe

Shoeless Joe Jackson is best known to some as the young baseball player portrayed in the movie, Field of Dreams. He is also known as one of the players accused of throwing the 1919 World Series game because of a bet. It is said that his batting swing was so good, Babe Ruth tried to copy him, and that his fielding was so good, no one dared hit it to his side of the outfield.

Born in 1889 in the small town of Brandon Mills, South Carolina, Jackson worked the cotton mills as a child instead of attending school. He played baseball for the cotton mill team, making a name for himself at an early age. After getting new spikes, his feet hurt so badly that he refused to play in any shoes; he played an entire game wearing only his socks on his feet.

The manager of the Philadelphia Athletics saw young Jackson and signed him to the baseball team in 1908. However, he played very little, and in 1910, signed with the Cleveland Indians. For the next three years he led the league with base hits, and his batting averages always hung around the .400 mark. In 1915, he was traded to the Chicago White Sox with high hopes. The White Sox won the American League pennant in 1917 and in 1919 with the help of Jackson. They were heavily favored to win the World Series, but lost the nine game series 5-3. Soon after, talk of a fix circulated, and an investigation was launched. Although the investigation found Shoeless Joe and his teammates innocent, the commissioner of baseball, Judge Kenesaw Mountain Landis, found the men guilty of intentionally throwing the 1919 World Series. Jackson and his teammates were banned from baseball forever. Until this day, Joe Jackson is not allowed in the Pro Baseball Hall of Fame.