Home » News » Babe Ruth’s daughter returns to Stetson Law campus

Babe Ruth’s daughter returns to Stetson Law campus


In 1932, Julia Ruth Stevens was a teenager with the most famous father in the world ─ Babe Ruth.

Her parents stayed at St. Petersburg’s prestigious Rolyat Hotel, where the “Sultan of Swat”  signed his legendary contract with the New York Yankees and stayed during spring training.

According to an article in the 2001 St. Petersburg Times, the Rolyat officially closed a little over a decade later. It is now the home of Stetson University College of Law.

Now 97 years old, Julia Ruth Stevens returned to the Rolyat/Stetson campus for the first time in decades on March 10. She joined Stetson’s Dean Chris Pietruszkiewicz in the law school courtyard, in the exact location and at the same desk where her father  signed his legendary contract. The desk has been safely housed at Stetson law school all these years.

Stevens was in Florida to kick off the City of St. Petersburg’s official Babe Ruth Day, celebrating the legacy of the “Great Bambino” and 100 years since the birth of spring training in Florida.

(L-R): Dean Chris Pietruszkiewicz visits with Julia Ruth Stevens at the site where Babe Ruth signed his historic contract at what is today Stetson University College of Law.

(L-R): Dean Chris Pietruszkiewicz visits with Julia Ruth Stevens at the site where Babe Ruth signed his historic contract at what is today Stetson University College of Law.

Julia Ruth Stevens examines the historic photo of her father Babe Ruth signing his contract with the Yankees at what is today the campus of Stetson Law in Gulfport.

Julia Ruth Stevens examines the historic photo of her father Babe Ruth signing his contract with the Yankees at what is today the campus of Stetson Law in Gulfport.

During an afternoon ceremony on March 10 at Al Lang Stadium in St. Petersburg  before a spring training game between the Baltimore Orioles and Team Canada, community organizations that benefited from Babe Ruth’s philanthropy and support gathered to honor the legendary player. Dean Pietruszkiewicz represented Stetson along with board members Joshua Magidson ’80 and Bill Weller ’04 at the event. Julia Ruth Stevens, who was presented with the keys to the City of St. Petersburg by Mayor Rick Kriseman ’87, threw out the opening pitch.

>>View more photos from Stevens’ visit to Al Lang Stadium and Stetson Law>>

Read more about Stevens’ historic visit to St. Petersburg in The New York Times.

View an article about Ruth signing his famous Yankees contract in the Evening Independent.