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Museum pitched for Billings’ Dehler Park

Cobb Field

Baseball enthusiasts in Billings want to commemorate the city’s hardball history with a new museum added to Dehler Park, the current home of the Billings Mustangs (rookie; Pioneer League) and the city’s American Legion teams.

The plan, as presented to the Billings City Council, calls for the Billings Baseball Preservation Society to raise $3.5 million to add a 7,000-square-foot addition to Dehler Park in two or three years. The addition would contain baseball memorabilia collected over the years and never exhibited at Cobb Field, which stood on the Dehler Park site. There’s a lot of colorful baseball history in Billings: Cobb Field was named for restaurateur Bob Cobb, owner of Hollywood’s Brown Derby who was instrumental in arranging pro baseball in town through the Hollywood Stars (Pacific Coast League). (He also claims to have invented the Cobb Salad, but that’s another story.) Former Baltimore Orioles pitcher Dave McNally grew up in Billings and played Legion ball there; after retirement he returned to Billings. (He’s already honored with a statue at the entrance to Dehler Park.)

The group would raise the money for construction and donate the addition to the city, while providing ongoing support for staffing and other expenses.

Image: Cobb Field.

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