This Day in Rochester History: Feb. 27 - Morrie Silver leads purchase of Rochester Red Wings by SEAN DOBBIN Democrat and Chronicle 2/27/14
February 27, 1957: Morrie Silver and Rochester Community Baseball, Inc., buys the Rochester Red Wings for $500,000.
For decades, the Red Wings had been the farm team for Major League Baseball's St. Louis Cardinals. But late in 1956, the Cardinals said that they no longer wished to field a farm team in Rochester. So Silver, a local businessman, decided to spearhead a community effort to purchase the team, saying that he wanted youngsters in Rochester to still be able to watch professional baseball.
The effort, which spanned just over two months and was referred to locally as the "72-day miracle," saw 8,222 eventual stockholders pitch in. And on February 27, 1957, Silver, the majority stockholder, would write a $500,000 check to the St. Louis Cardinals.
After the purchase, the Red Wings continued to exist as the Cardinals' farm team for three more years, before entering what would become a 42-season relationship with the Baltimore Orioles. Silver, meanwhile, would serve in some capacity for the Red Wings for much of the remainder of his life, working stints as the team's president and general manager. In 1996, 22 years after his death, the Red Wings would change the name of the address of their new stadium to "Morrie Silver Way," and in 2007, a statue of Silver was erected outside the stadium's entrance.