Cover image for Young Babe Ruth : his early life and baseball career from the memoirs of a Xaverian brother
Young Babe Ruth : his early life and baseball career from the memoirs of a Xaverian brother
Gilbert, Brother, C.F.X., 1884-
Publication Information:
Jefferson, N.C. : McFarland & Co., [1999]

Physical Description:
xv, 204 pages : illustrations ; 23 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
GV865.R8 G55 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area
GV865.R8 G55 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

On Order



This work contains the heretofore unpublished memoirs of Brother Gilbert (a.k.a. Philip F. Cairnes), the Xaverian brother generally credited with steering the Babe to his first professional contract. Ruth was raised by the Xaverian Brothers, a Catholic religious order, at St. Mary's Industrial School from 1902 (when he was only 7) until 1914. These reminiscences begin with Babe Ruth's departure from St. Mary's and concentrate on his early playing years. An historical introduction by the editor of these memoirs, Harry Rothgerber, details the history and relationship that existed between this organization of Catholic educators and the man who was to become the most influential baseball player and greatest slugger who ever lived. Brother John Joseph Sterne, the book's forewordist, recounts a St. Mary's band fundraising trip in which the band accompanied the Yankees through the American League cities at the end of the 1920 season. Several previously unpublished photos from the Xaverian Order complement the text.

Author Notes

The late Brother Gilbert, also known as Philip F. Cairnes, wrote these memoirs not long before his death in 1947. Harry Rothgerber, an attorney in Louisville, Kentucky, is a national director of the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR). He writes for the Baseball Research Journal, The National Pastime, and Louisville Baseball in the Major and Minor Leagues, along with several legal publications.

Reviews 1

Booklist Review

Gr. 9^-12. When George "Babe" Ruth was abandoned by his parents and sent to live at Saint Mary's Industrial School, Xaverian Brother Gilbert became his mentor. In these previously unpublished memoirs, completed in 1947, Gilbert shares his thoughts about the Babe's passion for life and his reckless youth. Each chapter, with plenty of dialogue and personal insight, is headed by extensive commentary from editor Harry Rothgerber, who provides context and smooths out Gilbert's text. Unfortunately, the book may be a hard sell to readers: the print is small, the vocabulary is often complex and archaic, and the contemplative tone won't appeal to many teens today. Still, the memoir, which includes several photographs and a lengthy index, does provide a discerning account of the formative years of an American hero whose legend is steeped as much in his robust personality as in his athletic achievements. --Roger Leslie

Table of Contents

Brother John Joseph Sterne, C.F.X.Harry RothgerberHarry Rothgerber
Forewordp. vii
Introductionp. 1
Chapter 1 Presenting Babe Ruthp. 27
Chapter 2 Last Days at St. Mary'sp. 38
Chapter 3 Life Outside St. Mary'sp. 51
Chapter 4 Babe Beats Connie Mack's World Championsp. 76
Chapter 5 Dunnie's Babe Attracts Attentionp. 90
Chapter 6 Babe Is Sold to the Red Soxp. 108
Chapter 7 Another Pennant for the Babep. 120
Chapter 8 Ruth Becomes a Yankeep. 135
Chapter 9 The Babe in Anecdotes and Statisticsp. 156
Epilogue: The Babe's Yankee Years and Thereafterp. 167
Sources Consultedp. 193
Indexp. 197