Summer of Shadows
A Murder, A Pennant Race, and the Twilight of the Best Location in the Nation
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The Sheppard case would influence the television series The Fugitive a decade later and give Cleveland’s reputation a black eye following the shoddy and unethical behavior of the city’s police department and news media, which led to the conviction of an innocent man. Meanwhile, the 1954 Indians would post the greatest season in American League history and dethrone the five-time-champion New York Yankees in a dramatic pennant race, culminating in a September doubleheader before 86,000 fans at Cleveland Stadium. The powerful Indians would then be swept by Willie Mays and the New York Giants in the World Series.
These two parallel tragedies harbinger an onslaught of adversity that dragged Cleveland from its lofty standing as a leading American city to one with a bleak-even comic-reputation.
Summer of Shadows is essentially a postcard from that gilded age, when the city enjoyed its own golden October, not knowing that decades of dismal, bitter winter lay ahead.
- Clerisy Press, December 2010
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