The Grand Avenue Grounds-“The subject matter of providing a permanent habitation and home for the Empire Club had long been under consideration by leading members of the club and early in this season (of 1868) assumed a tangible form by the appointment of a committee to select suitable grounds. They reported favorably upon what became known as the
Note: The Grand Avenue Grounds was the scene of most of the major baseball matches in StL between its creation and 1874. As home to both the Empires and Unions, “the base ball park,” as it was commonly referred to, would see uncountable championship matches as well as all of the most important baseball visitors to StL. It would also serve as the home of the Brown Stockings from 1875 to 1877 when they played in the NA and NL (when it would be the scene of the first NL game played in StL). After the collapse of the Brown Stockings following the 1877 season, the park would fall into disrepair until it was rebuilt by Sportsman’s Park and Club Association in 1881.
Note: The park would be home to the Browns until they moved to New Sportsman’s Park in 1892. The AL Browns would build the “modern” Sportsman’s Park on the grounds in 1902 and the grounds would be the scene of professional baseball until 1965.
The Abbey Race Track Grounds-“The Atlantic Club having established itself on new grounds at the Abbey race track played an inaugural game on Sept. 14 (1870) with the Empire Club, defeating the latter 25 to 19. The grounds were not in suitable condition but one prior game having been played upon it.
The Rivals Grounds-“The Red Sox defeated the Rivals on June 1 (1873) by a score of 47 to 5…on the Rivals grounds…”
The Lone Star Grounds-“…(on July 20, 1873) the Red Stocking and Rival Clubs played on the old Lone Star grounds back of Lafayette Park…” Al Spink, in The National Game, mentions a grounds just south of
Red Stocking Park-also known as the Compton Avenue Park, built in 1874 by Thomas McNeary on the site of the old Veto grounds; “On May 24 (1874) the Empires and Red Stockings opened on their series of championship games at Red Stocking park.” Was the site of the first game between two “professional” clubs on
Stocks Park-“The Stocks, as their name implies, was made up of livestock men, most of them residing in ‘Butcher Town’ north of Easton and west of Vandeventer avenue. Their grounds were located between (unintelligible).” I’m unable to read the Tobias text at this point and establish the location of the Stocks Grounds although one would assume that it was located somewhere around Vandeventer, near the site of what would become New Sportsman’s Park. Al Spink, in The National Game, mentions that the Stocks Grounds was located “just off
The Elephant and Saw Log Grounds-“The Elephant and ‘Saw Log’ Grounds on the river front, open field east of Broadway and north of North Market street, where the Elephant and ‘Saw Log’ teams played their games in the early seventies.” Al Spink, The National Game
Note: The Elephant club didn’t become prominent until around 1874/5 so Spink might be a bit off with his dates here.
Spink mentions that the grounds were located at “
Union Park-“(Henry Lucas) built Lucas Park on his own land, with a capacity for 10,000 fans. Lucas believed in comfort and aesthetics. Features included a huge grandstand, upholstered folding opera chairs, and leisure facilities. Patrons entering were serenaded by a cage full of canaries. With such amenities, the park was dubbed ‘The Palace Park of America.’ Fans weren’t the only pampered guests. The grounds housed a dressing room and reception area. One room was for reading and lectures. Another was designed for hygiene. The washroom had no less than nine bathtubs. For the fifty-six-game (1884) home schedule (of the Maroons), ball cranks could purchase a reserved season ticket for $22. Bleacher season tickets sold for $11.00.” J. Thomas Hetrick Chris Von der Ahe and the
New Sportsmans Park-“The New Sportsman’s Park, built in 1893 at the corner of Vandeventer Avenue and Natural Bridge Road, was one of (Chris) Von der Ahe’s many risky real-estate ventures. On