Furman Bisher, the only writer to ever land an interview with baseball great Shoeless Joe Jackson after his suspension from Major League baseball for his alleged involvement in the 1919 Black Sox scandal, died Sunday at 93.
Bisher secured an interview with Jackson for Sport magazine in 1949, 30 years after the infamous World Series in which the Greenville native and seven other Chicago White Sox players were said to have fixed the World Series against the Cincinnati Reds.
The interview appeared in the October 1949 issue of Sport, barely two years before Jackson died in Greenville at age 64.
The following year, Bisher joined the Atlanta Constitution and spent the next 59 years writing for it, its sister publication the afternoon Atlanta Journal, and their combined successor, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
His final column for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution was published in the October 11, 2009, Sunday paper, 60 years after his interview with Jackson.
The Sport interview was done in “as-told-to” style, as though Jackson wrote it. Given that Jackson was illiterate, Bisher likely wrote or recorded Jackson’s words, then transcribed them.