During the last few years in Herkimer, "Human Calculator" Scott Flansburg has been pushing the fact that the story behind the creation of the game of basketball is completely wrong. Now, he has an investigative book written by two noteworthy sports authors who are backing up his claim.

Photo Credit: Kristine Bellino, WIBX / TSM
Photo Credit: Kristine Bellino, WIBX / TSM

The book NAIS-MYTH - Basketball's Stolen Legacy by George and Darril Fosty, and Brian Carroll, was released on Tuesday following nearly a year of research and analysis, and they say it proves Herkimer does indeed have a legitimate claim to the creation of basketball. In fact, the book asks the question if the concept of basketball and its early rules were actually stolen from the then 16-year-old from Herkimer.

"Herkimer's claim as the origin of Basketball is fact and not folklore. Learn how Lambert Will came up with the idea when he was sorting cabbage for his mother to make sauerkraut in the cellar in 1890 - by tossing them into one of two peach baskets - and how this then moved to the local Grocery Store (w/friends) - and then to the YMCA in Herkimer," according to the book's preface.

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"The TRUTH always finds a way of raising to the surface - and that is definitely the case when it comes to the Origin of Basketball. Lambert Will and the Village of Herkimer (and surrounding communities of the Mohawk Valley) rise to the surface and claim their place in the annals of history - the ORIGIN of BASKETBALL," the authors write.

Flansburg has been pushing the storyline with the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and has announced big plans to celebrate basketball in Herkimer. He launched the Herkimer Originals, and American Basketball Association team based at Herkimer College, which has competed in its inaugural season by battling into the nation's Top 25. The Hall of Fame has chosen to adopt the story that James Naismith invented the game on his own in Springfield, MA, in 1891. This book by the Fosty brothers offers proof that they have uncovered that the game was being played a year before that in the Mohawk Valley.

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