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Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory Honors the Anniversary of the American Icon with New Exhibits, a Celebration Kick-Off Event and a Bourbon Release

For more than a century, Louisville Slugger bats have forged legends, created champions, and electrified ballparks at every level of the game. Now, as Hillerich & Bradsby Co. (H&B) celebrates 140 years since the birth of the sports icon, baseball fans can get to know the icon, its rich history and the family heritage surrounding it at the Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory.

'The Brilliance of Bats,' the museum’s upcoming temporary exhibit, celebrates the many sizes and shapes of Louisville Slugger bats, showcasing the astonishing feats achieved by players swinging the icon. From legendary home runs to record-breaking hits, each bat shares a story of triumph and legacy, illustrating the deeply personal relationship between a batter and this wooden wonder.

Adding to the allure of 'The Brilliance of Bats,' the museum will proudly showcase a rare gem: a game-used Babe Ruth bat adorned with his unmistakable signature. On loan from a private collection, this extraordinary piece of baseball history not only boasts the distinction of being wielded by the legendary Ruth during gameplay but also bears his signature—a testament to its unparalleled rarity and historical significance.

‘The Brilliance of Bats’ also celebrates the impact of Louisville Slugger bats across all facets of the game. From Little League diamonds to softball fields, and even in philanthropic endeavors, these bats have left an indelible mark on communities worldwide. 'The Brilliance of Bats' honors this legacy, showcasing the universal appeal and enduring influence of Louisville Slugger.

"The museum and factory are a living tribute to the craftsmanship and innovation that have defined our bat’s legacy for 140 years,” said John Hillerich, CEO of H&B. “We're excited to invite guests to join us in commemorating this milestone and experience firsthand the history and heritage behind this iconic bat."

Guests will also get to know the Hillerich family, which has overseen operations of H&B and production of the Louisville Slugger for five generations through the new “Hillerich Family Tree” video exhibit. Showcasing more than 70 family members across seven generations, the “Hillerich Family Tree” provides a look into the family's history.

"We're honored to play a role in preserving the legacy of the Louisville Slugger bat for future generations,” said Jack Hillerich, Chairman of the Board, H&B. “This anniversary is a testament to the Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory’s commitment to celebrating not just the bat itself, but the stories and traditions that surround it."

Additionally, Barrels & Billets, H&B’s bourbon attraction next door will be releasing a commemorative bourbon signed by members of the Hillerich family to mark the occasion. Timeless Timber is a Five Wood Bourbon inspired by the legacy of an American Icon and a tribute to the enduring spirit of quality and excellence. A total of 140 bottles will be signed and also include the 140th anniversary mini-bat. Bottles of Timeless Timber will be available for purchase only at Barrels & Billets starting March 28th. Bottles can be purchased at Barrels & Billets for $79.95.

The museum will host a 140th Anniversary Celebration on Thursday, March 28th beginning at 10:00 am. Members of the Hillerich family will be on-site signing mini-bats and available for interviews. The first 500 guests that take the factory tour will receive a limited-edition mini-bat and a pennant to commemorate the event. Other entertainment will be occurring throughout the day including inflatables for kids, an appearance by Buddy Bat of the Louisville Bats, free hot dogs and refreshments for guests and much more. To purchase museum tickets, click on the "Tickets" button at the top of this page.