Milam County Historical Museum
Milam County Historical Museum consists of three separate locations in downtown Cameron on the square. The main Museum is 112 W 1st; Old Jail Museum is 201 E Main and the Old Town Cameron and Railroad Museum is 110 W 1st, right next to the main museum and currently under renovation.
Come spend the day and visit all three!
A View Through History
With Kyle Schiller Barrett,
Memories of the Gause Ghost Looming as World Series Begins
Two professional baseball clubs from our state, the Houston Astros and the Texas Rangers, were vying in the American League Championship Series this week. This guaranteed that one of the two Major League Team from Texas would advance to the 2023 World Series. As it turns out, it’s the Texas Rangers who will advance to the Fall Classic. So now, with all the world’s eyes on Lone Star State for these decisive baseball games, it may bring up the question, “What part have Texans played in the World Series?” Undoubtedly, there have been endless riveting conversations about the historical facts, statistics, and trivia associated with all of the previous 118 World Series. But, where do Texans fit in?
One of these World Series historical facts that should be a source of pride for Milam County’s baseball fans, is that in 1933 a native of Milam County was a major player for the World Series Champion New York Giants. Joe Gregg Moore, Sr., a native of Gause in eastern Milam County, played for the New York Giants from 1930-1941. Moore was a left fielder and batted left handed, but threw with his right hand. His twelve seasons with the Giants were littered with many accomplishments, records, and awards. He played in three World Series (1933, 1936, 1937) with his New York teammates.
Often called Jo-Jo Moore, and fondly remembered by his nickname “The Gause Ghost,” Joe Moore had a very impressive career in Major League Baseball. He was known as an intimidating, left-handed-hitting lead-off man. He was a line-drive hitter who hit over .300 five times in his major league career and led the National League in at-bats in 1935. The 1933 World Series was won by the New York Giants, when “The Gause Ghost” was in his prime. However, he also played in two World Series with the Giants when they lost both times to the New York Yankees. Yet even in those loses, the Milam County native Moore, was remembered as one of the stars of the ’36 and ’37 series. There he competed among the elite in MLB, batting and fielding against players like DiMaggio and Gehrig. He even played against the legendary Babe Ruth. Still, Jo-Jo Moore would hold his own and became a legend in his own right. In 1934, NY Giants Manager Bill Terry said quote “Jo-Jo Moore is the greatest left fielder I ever saw!” The small-town boy’s accomplishments on the baseball field also netted Moore six All-Star Game appearances playing for the National League Team from 1934-1938 and again in 1940. Not bad for a kid from Gause, Texas.
Moore’s nickname, The Gause Ghost, stems from the fact that he was a speedster on the baseball diamond, and he was born in the town of Gause on Christmas Day in 1908. Joe Gregg Moore was the only child of his parents Charlie and Rowena (Gregg) Moore. His family lived in the farming community of Gause during most of Joe’s upbringing. However, they did live in Crystal City, Texas for a short time, where young Joe graduated from Crystal City High in 1927. After high school he moved back to Central Texas to attend Texas A&M. But that’s when pro-baseball came calling and Jo-Jo Moore left college to join several minor league clubs in Texas. These clubs included the Coleman Bobcats of the West Texas League and the San Antonio Indians of the Texas League. By 1930, his talents and playing ability was noticed by the manager of the New York Giants and the rest is history… Milam County History to be exact.
After retiring from baseball, Joe Moore came back to his Milam County roots and became a cattle rancher in Gause. On April 1, 2001, at the age of 92, Joe (Jo-Jo) Moore died in Bryan. He was the very last surviving member of the 1933 New York Giants World Series Championship Team.
The Milam County Historical Museum in downtown Cameron has a display of various sports from the communities of Milam County. In the baseball section of this exhibit, the local museum proudly displays a baseball and a bat both signed by Joe Moore. Plus, photos of “The Gause Ghost”
and a Joe Moore baseball card from the 1930’s. This rare and collectable baseball card was donated to the MCHM by Mark Clore of Dickinson, Texas. Mark is the son of Hank and Sherry Clore, (she is a MCHM Board Member) of Cameron. Mark is also the brother of Milam County Sheriff Mike Clore. The museum is grateful to Mr. Mark Clore for his generous donation. We invite all who are interested in Milam County History, sports related or not, to visit the museum to learn more. Many local individuals from our communities are featured in displays in the museum. Museum hours are Thursday-Saturday 10am to 3pm or by appointment on other days.
Lastly, for the next week or so, whether you are a baseball fan or not; as all the hype begins to surround the Texas Ranger’s trip to the 2023 World Series, just remember “The Gause Ghost.” Think about how years ago one of our own citizens from right here in Milam County made it to ‘The Big Show” and helped a Major League Baseball Team win the World Series!