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Alva Bradley II (February 28, 1884 – March 30, 1953), was a businessman and baseball team executive.

Alva Bradley II
Born(1884-02-28)February 28, 1884
DiedMarch 30, 1953(1953-03-30) (aged 69)
NationalityUnited States
EducationCornell University
Occupationreal estate developer
Known forPrincipal owner of Cleveland Indians


Early lifeEdit

Bradley was born in Cleveland to prominent family, the eldest of five children of Morris A. Bradley and the former Anna A. Leininger. He was named after his grandfather, the famed Captain Alva Bradley, who also gave inventor Thomas Edison his middle name of Alva (he was the best friend of Edison's father Samuel)[1] and helped started what became Case Western Reserve University.[2] Morris Bradley was the only son of Capt. Bradley, inheriting his father’s successful ship-building company and at one point was one of the largest real estate owners in Cleveland.[3] [4]

Bradley attended the University School of Cleveland and Cornell, along with this brother Charles, who was 20-months younger than Alva, graduating in 1908.

Professional lifeEdit

He was president of the group that bought the Cleveland Indians in 1927 for $1 million, and which in 1946 sold the team to Bill Veeck. While he was the team's president, he was not the majority shareholder. Other members of the ownership group included his brother, Charles C. Bradley, with whom he invested $175,000, John Sherwin Sr. ($300,000), Percy Morgan ($200,000), Newton D. Baker ($25,000), attorney Joseph C. Hostetler ($25,000) and the Van Sweringen brothers ($250,000).[5] During his tenure the team signed teenage strikeout king Bob Feller in a controversial move that had to ultimately be resolved by baseball commissioner Kenesaw Mountain Landis. During the 1940 season Indian players, led by Mel Harder and Ken Keltner, came to him demanding that he fire team manager Ossie Vitt. The Indians were labeled "Crybabies" for doing so and lost the pennant race on the last day of the season. Bradley went out on a limb by hiring then 25-year-old Lou Boudreau as team manager.

Bradley had a number of other business interests. He owned a real estate company and was president and treasurer of the United States Coal Company. He served on the boards of several Van Sweringen companies, the American Shipbuilding Company, Great Lakes Towing Company, and others, and was chairman of Cleveland Builders Supply Company.

He was married to the former Marguerite Andrews and had four children: a son and three daughters.


  1. ^ Martinez, Eddie. "A Portrait of Thomas A. Edison". Retrieved 29 April 2017.
  2. ^ "The dictionary of Cleveland biography". Digital Case. Retrieved 29 April 2017.
  3. ^ "Morris Bradley". OnlineBiographies. Retrieved 29 April 2017.
  4. ^ "Alva Bradley Bio". Baseball Reference. Retrieved 29 April 2017.
  5. ^ Franklin Lewis (2006). Alva Bradley. The Kent State University Press, Kent OH, reprint originally G.P.Putnam & Sons, NY NY 1949. pp. 153–155. ISBN 978-0-87338-885-6.

External linksEdit