SIM-37: Christopher "Buddy" Cusack Collection
Scope and Contents
The bulk of the Cusack collection is related to the Staten Island Little League (SILL), the oldest Little League on Staten Island. Series 1 contains organizational records for both SILL and the Seaver Avenue Men’s club, of which Cusack was a member. Series 2 consists of correspondence from the 1950s to the 1990s. Series 3 contains a small number of photographs, mainly from the 1950s and the 1970s. Series 4 houses rule books, training manuals and other publications by Little League Baseball, Inc. and other related organizations. News clippings, the bulk of which are from the 1950s to the 1980s, are found in Series 5. Series 6 contains programs from various events of the community organizations Cusack belonged to, primarily from the 1960s. Series 7 contains 8mm film reels of the SILL Opening Day ceremonies from the late 1960s and early 1970s [n.b. no playback equipment is available; these films await reformatting/preservation]. Series 8 is made up of memorabilia, including baseball hats, political pins, and other items.
Biographical / Historical
Christopher John (Buddy) Cusack was born in Jersey City, NJ, on October 12, 1918. Cusack served in the National Guard at Sea Girt, NJ from 1937 to 1941, where he was a corporal in the 113th Infantry of the 44th Division. In 1942 he enlisted in the Army and served during World War II in Europe, the Middle East, and North Africa with the 69th Infantry Division and the 83rd Infantry Division. He achieved the rank of sergeant and was squad leader. In Belgium, during the Battle of the Bulge, Cusack was wounded on January 14, 1945. He recuperated at Halloran Hospital on Staten Island. By the time of his discharge from service in 1945 he had been awarded the Purple Heart, three Bronze Stars and the Silver Star.
Before his military service, Cusack had worked for Burroughs Corporation in Manhattan starting in 1937. In 1945, he returned to his job repairing typewriters and adding machines and was eventually a service supervisor. In 1946, he moved to Staten Island where he resided for the rest of his life. Cusack left Burroughs in 1951. Taking advantage of his fashion industry contacts he opened three office products sales and service stores – Fashion Center Business Co. and A-One Business Machine Co., both in Manhattan, and Sterling Adding and Bookkeeping, Newark, New Jersey. He sold all of them in 1961.
Following the sale of his businesses, Cusack held a variety of jobs from 1961 to 1981. From 1961 to 1962, he assisted in the refurbishment of Our Lady Queen of Peace R.C. Church, New Dorp. He owned the Hi-Bay Bar, Tompkinsville, from 1962 to 1964, and Christopher’s Candy Store, New Dorp, from 1965 to 1967. From 1968 to 1971, Cusack was an inspector for Yonkers Raceway, New York, In 1971, he became a fraud investigator in the office of State Attorney General Louis Lefkowitz, retiring from the position in 1981. From 1982 to 1996, Cusack worked part time as a park ranger for the National Park Service at Miller Field and Great Kills Park.
Cusack was a member of many community organizations, including the South Shore Republican Club, Community Board 2, the Manresa Council of the Knights of Columbus, the Oakwood Heights Post of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, the Huttner-Pasqualini Post of the American Legion, the Austin H. Evans Chapter of the Disabled Veterans of America, the Staten Island Elks Lodge, and the Staten Island Post of the Catholic War Veterans. He was also a member of the Monsignor Farrell High School Fathers’ Club, the Seaver Avenue Men’s Club, the Holy Name Society of Our Lady Queen of Peace Church (where he was a parishioner), and the Mountain Manor Golf Club (Marshall’s Creek, Pennsylvania).
One of Cusack’s volunteer achievements was participating in the founding of the Staten Island Little League (SILL) in 1953. Cusack was one of the six founding members, along with Jiggs Seaman, John Marino, Joe Darcy, and his sons: Jimmy Darcy and Joe Darcy, Jr. They were inspired by witnessing the great interest on Staten Island for amateur sports while attending a Golden Gloves boxing match in Cromwell Center, Tompkinsville. SILL played its opening day doubleheader three months later in a vacant parcel of land called Seaver Oval, near the current three-field complex in Dongan Hills. An adjacent tract of land was later named Buddy Cusack Field in Cusack’s honor.
Cusack died in January 2001 at the age of 82. He had been married for 49 years to Marie Cusack, née Murray. The couple had a son, Christopher John Jr., a daughter, Elizabeth Baker, and three grandchildren.
8 Linear Feet
Language of Materials
The Christopher “Buddy” Cusack Collection records are divided into 8 series: Series 1: Organizational Records Subseries A: Staten Island Little League Subseries B: Seaver Avenue Men’s Club -Local Organizational History -Constitution and By-Laws Administrative Records -Meetings Minutes -Financial Records -President’s Reports Series 2: Correspondence (1950s to 1990s) Series 3: Photographs Series 4: Publications -Newsletters -Posters Produced by the Chapter Series 5: News Clippings -Articles from Newspapers and Magazines about the Chapter -National Organization -Founding Members, etc. Series 6: Programs - other organizations Series 7: 8mm Film Reels Series 8: Memorabilia
- Cusack, Christopher John Subject Source: Local sources
- Little League baseball Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- Seaver Avenue Men's Club Subject Source: Local sources
- Staten Island Little League Subject Source: Local sources
- Christopher "Buddy" Cusack Collection
- Language of description
- Script of description
Part of the CSI Archives & Special Collections Repository