ALLEN, MEL, 1913-1996


Sportscaster. Born– February 14, 1913, Birmingham. Parents– Julius and Anna (Lieb) Israel. (Changed his name legally in 1943).  Education– Phillips High School, Birmingham; University of Alabama, A.B., 1932, LL.B., 1936. Pased the bar exam in 1933, but never practiced law. Taught at the University of Alabama, 1932-1937. Began his career as a sports announcer in 1935 by broadcasting a University of Alabama football game against Tulane; broadcast for the University, 1935-36.  Worked for CBS, 1937-43; began as a staff announcer but was promoted to sportscasting by 1939; announced Yankees games, 1939-64.  Served in the U.S. Army, 1943-45; broadcast on Armed Forces Radio and The Army Hour.  Head of broadcasting for the New York Yankees,  1946-64; returned to work for the Yankees, 1978-86.  Host of the syndicated television show “The Week in Baseball,” 1977-96. Honors– Named to the National Sportswriters and Broadcasters Association Hall of Fame, 1972; one of the first winners of the Baseball Hall of Fame Ford C. Frick Award for Broadcasting, 1978; American Sportscasters Hall of Fame, 1985; inducted into the Radio Hall of Fame, 1988. Named one of the Top 50 Sportcasters by the American Sportcasters Association, 2009. A plaque was placed in Yankee Stadium in his honor in 1998. Died June 16, 1996.


Who’s Who in America, 1978; American National Biography online; obituary; bhamwiki


You Can’t Beat the Hours. New York; Harper, 1964.


It Takes Heart. New York; Harper, 1959.