One Tank Trip

One Tank Trip: Sports Legends of Delaware County Museum

RADNOR TOWNSHIP, Pa. - As folks come in and out of the Radnor Township Municipal building in Delaware County, they are passing right by some pretty big sports stars.

If you take a minute and look around, you'll notice a museum in the same space as the township business.

Jim Vankoski is curator of the Sports Legends of Delaware County Museum which began in 2002 as a small exhibit honoring local sports heroes.

As Vankoski explains. "That's how we started with 50 most notable sports representatives, and we've added on to that as time went on depending on who met our criteria. It's very hard criteria, very hard. We have 10 Olympic medal winners so if you're an Olympic Medal winner you're sort of automatic."

Basketball, football or baseball hall of famers are also automatics ins.

It starts as soon as you walk in the first set of doors where you're greeted by cutouts of baseball greats and local heroes Mickey Vernon and Danny Murtaugh.

You'll see the Los Angeles Angels' Mike Scoscia's jersey from his 2002 World Series win on the other side of the front doors.

Sports fans have lots to explore and those who are not as interested in sports might still be in awe of the stories behind the stars. You'll learn a little bit about their lives.

Map: One Tank Trip: Sports Legends of Delaware County Museum

You have to have won an Olympic gold medal to be up on one of the walls. There's a picture and plaque honoring tennis player Richard Williams who won gold in doubles in 1924. He survived the sinking of the Titanic. Vankoski says, "And I do love the stories, the stories that I get are unbelievable."

Vankoski says he might have one of the most unique pieces of baseball memorabilia. As he explains, "So this is signed by everybody that played in the major leagues in 1957. This is worth, if you're a baseball fan from this area especially, the trip itself." The signatures are all on a slab of horsehide which is now framed and on the wall. The slab was given to Mickey Vernon by a horsehide salesman and Vernon got the idea to have everyone sign it.

When you look around, the breadth of talent is honorable from all sorts of different sports. There's even a section dedicated to curling with a photo of four sisters who are competitive. You might see one or more of them in the next Winter Olympics.

You'll recognize the striped shorts of one of the uniforms. Granny Lash was a Harlem Globetrotter.

67 Delaware Countians have played in the NFL. There are so many that the museum had to reserve the big photos on the walls for those players who played in 100 games or more.

But if you made a contribution to the world of sports, you're recognized here in some way for your sports achievements and character.

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