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RENEE MONTAGNE, host:

Time now for StoryCorps, the project that is collecting America's stories. Today, something out of baseball history.

Brooklyn Dodgers fans were devastated when they learned their team was moving out here to Los Angeles. It was the 1957th season, and attendance at Brooklyn's Ebbets Field plummeted. Their final home game was played 50 years ago this week. Fewer than 7,000 fans turned out, but Harvey Sherman was there. He recently came to StoryCorps to remember how he said goodbye to his favorite team.

(Soundbite of music)

Mr. HARVEY SHERMAN (Dodgers' Fan): The first two weeks of September, the Dodgers were on the road. And they were scheduled to come back to Brooklyn for a makeup game with the Pirates. And that was going to be their last game at Ebbets Field.

It was my birthday. I was 21, and I was going to go to the game. I've asked a few people to go, and (unintelligible), what are you, crazy? You're going to be the only one there. Who gives - you know, the heck with them. They're leaving us. The heck with them. We're not interested. So I went to the game by myself.

(Soundbite of music)

Mr. SHERMAN: The lights were on. The grass was as beautiful as it was the first day of the season. The players were on the field, but there was no one in the stands. The place was vacant. It was eerie. I could have sat anyplace in the ballpark I wanted.

During the game, Gladys Goodding, who was the organist, everything she played was a blues song about losing a lover. And after the game, I remember leaving, and she was playing "Auld Lang Syne." And then they cut her off in the middle, and they put the Dodgers' theme song on.

(Soundbite of Dodgers' theme song)

Unidentified Group: (Singing) Follow the Dodgers. Follow the Dodgers around.

Mr. SHERMAN: When I walked out of Ebbets Field, I stood a block away and just looked back. The lights were still on. And I said, you know, goodbye. It was over. I'd never thought the Dodgers would leave. It was a like a divorce. You feel like a child in a divorce, like you had no control over what was happening. And I couldn't make it any clearer than that. There was a period of time I wouldn't even go to a ball game. And I had no recollection of what happened in '58, '59, '60, '70, '80, no. No recollection whatsoever.

And I'm sure wonderful things happened, but I have - I just completely have blocked it out of my mind. And to this day, I miss it terribly. I miss it terribly.

(Soundbite of music)

MONTAGNE: Harvey Sherman in New York. His interview will be archived along with all the others at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress.

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