If you have ever found yourself sitting in the crowd at a ball game in Cramton Bowl or watching the Camellia Bowl on television or even driving down Madison Avenue past this famous Montgomery landmark you may have thought: ‘I'd like to know more about Cramton Bowl itself and the history that has taken place there in it's nearly century-long existence.’

If this has ever happened to you then you probably did what we all do, which is, grab your laptop or smartphone and do a quick search on your favorite search engine for books about Cramton Bowl. Until now all that your search would have yielded is the familiar and very irritating ‘no results found' or the even more frustrating result of a list of books that are really about other subjects but contain passing references to Cramton Bowl.

Now all of those fruitless Google searches are a thing of the past thanks to Tim Gayle and his new book “Cramton Bowl: From Babe Ruth and Bear Bryant to Billy Graham and Jerry Rice.”

As Sports Editor for The Montgomery Independent, Tim has a deep interest in and knowledge of sports in Montgomery. This interest is what compelled him to dig up all the old stories and history of Cramton Bowl that he writes about in the book. Stories like the time in 1922 when Sidney Lanier High School beat Troy State University 21-0 in one of the first football games played in the stadium or how Babe Ruth and the New York Yankees played their first of four games in Cramton bowl in 1928.

“My original intent,” Gayle says, “was to write a book about the Iron Bowl, which no one had done in a long time, then I thought about the Blue/Gray game or even the Camellia Bowl but doing research on those things I kept coming across references to Cramton Bowl so I decided that I'd write a book about that.”

Researching the Iron Bowl and Blue/Gray game would indeed lead to many references to Cramton Bowl. As noted in the book the Blue/Gray game was held in the stadium from its inaugural game in 1939 until 2001, Auburn played 50 games in the stadium between 1922 and 1953 and Alabama played almost as many there including a 10-6 win over Georgia in 1922 that drew around 10,000 spectators (a very large crowd at the time).

But, football aside, Cramton Bowl was designed as a multi-purpose stadium whose main purpose was holding baseball games, football came in second and other types of events were welcome as well. The reason for this is, as Gayle says, “baseball was bigger at the time the bowl was built. It drew bigger crowds.” The first athletic event at Cramton Bowl was indeed a baseball game between Auburn and Vanderbilt on May 1, 1922, as mentioned earlier, the Yankees played four games there, the Philadelphia Athletics played at Cramton Bowl long before they moved to Oakland, and the Cincinnati Reds and Brooklyn Robins also played games in the stadium.

Besides sports it has hosted numerous events in its history such as demolition derbies and even Billy Graham's Greater Montgomery Revival in 1965. With the addition of the Montgomery Multiplex in 2012 the stadium continues to host a large number of diverse events to this day.

To learn more about Cramton Bowl and it's amazing history there's no need to fear coming up with a “big goose egg'' in your search engine adventure. The solution is now quite a bit simpler and far more enjoyable, simply go down to your favorite bookstore and ask for “Cramton Bowl: From Babe Ruth and Bear Bryant to Billy Graham and Jerry Rice”: by Tim Gayle. The book was published by Page Publishing and is also available online at the iTunes store, Amazon, Google Play (in audio form), or Barnes & Noble.