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Ozzy

Baseball, anyone?

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Roger

Thanks for making mention of that scene; I'll have to view the movie again and watch for "the Rules" in use.

http://www.pacivilwartrails.com/stories/tales/baseball-and-the-civil-war  Baseball and the Civil War by Terry Bluett

Although the above reference was posted over a year ago, it is well worth a read (for those interested in how and why Baseball became associated with the Civil War); and why I believe we honor the memory and sacrifice of war participants, North and South, simply by attending a game at the ballpark, or playing the game during 4th of July picnics.

Play ball...

Ozzy

 

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Roger

Thanks for returning the baseball photograph to SDG: it was posted once before, but the link must have failed, and the image disappeared. (One of the serious problems with Internet-based references is that the links get changed, or time-out... and have to be hunted down again.)

Regards

Ozzy

http://www.nndb.com/people/443/000022377/   Just one of the myths, believed by some to this day...

 

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i wondered what happened to the picture .i am also glad that it has returned...probably explains other posts disappearing.

 

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"Three times around, and you were out..."

With a bit of time to kill, thought it would be interesting to find out how baseball was depicted and reported, in the years prior to the Civil War. So, at Chronicling America (a newspaper archive run by Library of Congress), selected "Illinois newspapers" from "1857 to 1863" and with "baseball" as search term, hit [Search]. And got back seven results... And, that could not be right, so I had a look at the results that came back; and discovered I had mispelled "baseball." It was supposed to be "base ball" (with a space between the two words.)

With "base ball" as search term (and continuing same other parameters), tried again... and the first reported game of base ball appeared in the 26 June 1858 edition of the Ottawa Free Trader, page 3, col.2 (a "challenge match" between Ottawa and Marseilles.) The challenge was issued on June 12th, and the game played Friday, June 18th 1858, with a score reported as being Ottawa 81, Marseilles 77 ...in the First Inning. After playing three hours and forty minutes (and completing three innings) the Final score was Ottawa 230, Marseilles 207 (obviously, the rules in play were "Massachusetts Rules.") Perhaps best just to call it Base Ball (with the space left between the two words.)

Naturally, the follow-up question: "When did "baseball" (one word, no spaces or hyphens) first get a mention?"

Selected "Illinois newspapers" from "1857 to 1880" and with "baseball" as search term... there came back 1687 hits, with the earliest (not mispelled) to be found in the Chicago Daily Tribune of 20 OCT 1862 on page 2, col.3, in an article describing, "the lack of success of General McClellan in the East; and how long -- how many chances -- should the man be given before he was removed, permanently?"

In response, President Lincoln stated, "In my day, when we played baseball, the rule was three times around and out." [Some later historians (obviously not familiar with baseball) took this to mean "three innings, and game over" (as shown by Ottawa vs Marseilles); or "three trips around the bases" (which is just... silly). For myself, I believe President Lincoln, if speaking today, would say, "three strikes, and you're out" (referring to "three rotations of the bat around, without hitting the ball.")

Regardless, this is the first mention of baseball that I have uncovered... attributed to Abraham Lincoln.

Ozzy

References:  http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn84038582/1858-06-26/ed-1/seq-3/#date1=1857&sort=date&date2=1880&words=Ball+Base&searchType=basic&sequence=0&index=0&state=Illinois&rows=20&proxtext=base+ball&y=14&x=16&dateFilterType=yearRange&page=1  Ottawa Free Trader of Saturday 26 June 1858.

http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn84031490/1862-10-20/ed-1/seq-2/#date1=1860&sort=date&date2=1880&words=baseball&searchType=basic&sequence=0&index=2&state=Illinois&rows=20&proxtext=baseball&y=0&x=0&dateFilterType=yearRange&page=1  Chicago Daily Tribune of 20 OCT 1862.

 

 

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Roger 

Interesting pair of images you've just posted. First, the Philadelphia Town ball club claiming to be the "Home of Base Ball." In the same way Cricket is not baseball (although the bat and ball game played on an oval, and involving wickets, stumps, bails and 11 players on a side, devised in the 1600's no doubt inspired the red-headed step-child that eventually became baseball), so Town ball, and Rounders are not baseball. And Base ball (which we can define -- who is going to stop us? -- as "Massachusetts Rules") is not baseball. Therefore, if the Philadelphia Town ball club wants to lay claim to "Home of Base Ball," more power to them. Base ball is not baseball.

According to Revisionists -- I've just come back from washing my mouth out with soap -- the "originator of baseball" currently is credited to Alexander Cartwright, founder of the Knickerbocker Base Ball Club (early 1840's) and writer of the Knickerbocker Rules (which with slight adjustment, became New York Rules. (Someone made the leap from Base Ball to Baseball, and Cartwright possesses the best claim, as of 2018... and he's in the Baseball Hall of Fame, too, since 1938.)

Until Alexander Cartwright started pushing everyone towards "his form of the game," the variety that spread west during the 1850's was Base Ball. A recent review of newspapers of that Antebellum period determined that by 1859, Base Ball was being played in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin and Iowa. And Kansas. And New Orleans. (So the "lemon-peel ball" recovered by Giles Hellum on the Battlefield of Shiloh could have belonged to a soldier from any of those States... maybe not Kansas.) In Chicago, there were a number of clubs competing against each other (most famous were Excelsior and Atlantic.) A line of towns between Chicago and Rock Island had their own informal competition going (matches played in response to a "challenge.") The YMCA, from Philadelphia to Chicago, was promoting base ball "as a healthy form of exercise." And in New Orleans, the Empire Base Ball Club was Champion of the 1859 Season. (And the Kansas Herald of 25 June 1859 was advocating for women to play base ball, too.)

The Second image (above) is supposed to represent a Game of Base Ball played on the 4th of July 1862 at Salisbury Prison Camp in North Carolina (although it could just as easily been meant to represent one of the many games played at Camp Oglethorpe by Shiloh prisoners during their confinement.) No Shiloh Prisoners were confined at Salisbury (yes, I have researched Southern Prisons) so these Federal prisoners likely were captured in the Eastern Theatre (possibly troops belonging to Butler, Du Pont or McClellan.) The game is obviously a form of baseball (the runner on First is attempting to steal Second; as the "Hurtler" is about to complete his under-arm delivery... a chance for the "batsman" or "Striker." And the only player with a glove (due to repeatedly fielding for the Hurtler) is the "Keeper" or catcher.)

[Supposedly, the Salisbury match ended 11 - 11 ...a draw. With such a low score, it was likely played in accordance with New York Rules.]

Ozzy

References:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexander_Cartwright  As of this post, recognized as "Originator of Baseball"

http://sabr.org/gamesproj/game/july-4-1862-civil-war-pow-game  Salisbury POW match of July 4th 1862

http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_vault/2013/02/04/civil_war_baseball_a_ball_used_by_soldiers_before_fighting_at_shiloh.html  Hellum's Shiloh trophy

http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn84028385/1858-05-12/ed-1/seq-2/#date1=1858&index=1&rows=20&words=ball+base&searchType=basic&sequence=0&state=Ohio&date2=1858&proxtext=base+ball&y=14&x=12&dateFilterType=yearRange&page=1  Western Reserve Chronicle (Warren, Ohio) of 12 May 1858 page 2, "$3 fine to be imposed for playing base ball on Sunday."

http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn82015672/1858-07-23/ed-1/seq-3/#date1=1857&sort=date&rows=20&words=ball+base+base-ball&searchType=basic&sequence=0&index=18&state=&date2=1860&proxtext=base+ball&y=10&x=19&dateFilterType=yearRange&page=2  Evansville Indiana Daily Journal of 23 July 1858 page 3, "We predict Cricket will win out over Base ball [as the game of choice] in the long run."  Ummmm...

 

 

 

 

 

 

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