Saturday, April 18, 2009

The Great Match Of Base Ball

To-day a great match between the Sycamore (sic) and Morning Star base ball clubs will take place in the field immediately west of the Fair Grounds.  The game will be played according to the rules of the National Convention of ball players.  The match will commence precisely at four o'clock p.m., and will undoubtedly be the greatest game ever played in this city.
  -St. Louis Daily Bulletin, July 9, 1860

The Great Match of Base Ball-Victory By The Morning Star Club.-The announcement that the first match of base ball ever played in St. Louis would take place on Monday afternoon on the field west of the Fair Grounds, between the Cyclones and Morning Star Clubs, was sufficient to call out a large number of spectators, among whom were several ladies.  A very great interest was manifested by all present, who expressed their delight at the many instances of fine play displayed by both clubs.  The match resulted in the victory of the Morning Star by twenty-six runs...
-St. Louis Daily Bulletin, July 11, 1860

The score of the match, as given by the Bulletin, was 50-24.  Playing for the Cyclones was Peters, ss; Alfred Bernoudy, c.f.; Merritt Griswold, p.; Edward Farrish, 3rd b.; Gamble (either Joseph or Rufus), c.;  Maurice Alexander, 1st b.; Fitch, 2nd b.; Edward Bernoudy, l.f.; and Edward Bredell, r.f.  Playing for the Morning Stars was Robert Henry, c.; Archibald Duff, 1st b.; David Naylor, r.f.; Case, 2nd b.; William Henry, s.s.; Finney, p.; John Henry, c.f.; Wilson, 3rd b.; and Rawson, l.f.  Peters and Fitch of the Cyclones and Case, Finney, Wilson, and Rawson of the Morning Star are all unidentified at the moment.

The scorers for the game was Jonathan Collier of the Cyclone Club and Joseph Franklin of the Morning Stars.  The umpire was S.L. Putnam, "formerly of the Metropolitan Club, New York."

This account of the game is similar to the one in the July 17, 1860 edition of Porter's Spirit of the Times, although they gave the final score as 49-24.  Since I haven't posted that account, I will now rectify the situation:

Base Ball At St. Louis, Mo.-The first game of base that was ever played West of the Mississippi, under the rules of the National Association, was played at St. Louis, on Monday, the 9th inst; between the Morning Star  and Cyclone Clubs.

We now have three contemporary sources for the Cyclone/Morning Star match, including the notice of the game in the Daily Missouri Democrat.  All three essentially agree that it was the first match game played in St. Louis under the rules of the National Association.  So I'm thinking we can call that a settled fact.  

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