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Browning, Petelocked

(17 June 1861–10 September 1905)
  • Robert E. Weir

Extract

Browning, Pete (17 June 1861–10 September 1905), baseball player, was born Lewis Rogers Browning in Louisville, Kentucky. Very little is known of his parents and early years. As a child Browning contracted mastoiditis, a middle ear infection. Because the illness was never properly diagnosed or treated, Browning suffered from it his entire life. Periodically his ear filled with fluid, rendering him totally deaf. His condition embarrassed him, and he missed so much school because of it that he never attained literacy. Nonetheless he developed athletic prowess in shooting marbles, ice skating, and playing baseball. The pain from his condition led Browning to drink heavily from an early age, though very few people ever knew of his medical problems, and many criticized what they perceived as Browning’s moral weakness....

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