Created by the International League Baseball Writers' Association, the International League Hall of Fame originated on June 12, 1947 when nine former players, managers and League officials were formally inducted into the Hall's first class. The induction included unveiling of the International League Hall of Fame plaque at the League's New York City offices located in the Ruppert Building at 535 Fifth Avenue.
From 1948 until 1960, a class of three individuals was inducted into the HOF every year. In 1961, '62 and '63, a class of one was inducted annually. With the demise of the League's Baseball Writers' Association, the Hall of Fame selection process went dormant and the roster of inductees remained at 51. With the passing of the only three-time International League Most Valuable Player (1953, '55, '58), two-time Triple Crown Winner (1955, '58) and IL Hall of Famer Glenn "Rocky" Nelson (class of '60) in October, 2006, no living Hall of Fame members remained.
Dormant for more than four decades, the IL Hall of Fame was revived in 2008 as part of the League's 125th Anniversary Celebration. Following three years of "transition" classes, a maximum of three members have been inducted annually since 2011.
The International League Hall of Fame Plaque Display does not have a permanent home, but rather serves as a traveling testament to the League's most revered legends. The display will make occasional appearances in parks throughout the International League, including during enshrinement ceremonies.
In July, 2007, League Directors unanimously passed legislation during the League's All-Star Game meeting in Albuquerque, NM, which included the following:
Recognizing that in 1947 the International League Baseball Writers' Association began a Hall of Fame into which a total of 51 individuals were inducted over the course of 17 years concluding with the 1963 induction, the current Directors of the League have adopted policies, procedures and guidelines for the purpose of reviving this sacred institution as part of the League's 2008 Quasquicentennial Celebration, which will commemorate the League's 125th season of play (1884-2008).
A phased process to revive the IL Hall of Fame was adopted:
2007 - Special Induction in August with a class of two: former League presidents and general managers Harold M. Cooper and George H. Sisler, Jr.
2008 - Transition Induction with no more than 28 inductees selected by the Anniversary Committee and announced in January.
2009 - Transition Induction with no more than 14 inductees selected by the Anniversary Committee and announced in January.
2010 - Transition Induction with no more than 7 inductees selected by the Anniversary Committee and announced in January.
2011 - Start of Annual Induction with up to 3 inductees to be nominated by fans, media and executives and elected by eligible voters as defined within the International League Hall of Fame Policies, Procedures and Guidelines.
Anyone, with or without direct affiliation with the League, is permitted to submit nomination for the IL Hall of Fame.