All the Deputy Sheriff's, Marshall's and some of the clerks at the Court House went out on Franklin avenue, near Leffingwell avenue, yesterday afternoon, and had a spirited game of old town ball. We are glad to know that this pleasant game has been revived this season. A regular club has been organized, and will meet once a week during the season.
-St. Louis Daily Bulletin, May 4, 1860
This is the first reference to town ball in a contemporary St. Louis newspaper that I've found.
Edmund Tobias, in his history, mentions that town ball was popular in St. Louis and played in the antebellum period prior to the advent of the New York game in the city. Also, there's a hint in his writings that the Excelsior Club had previously been a town ball club. Richard Perry, in 1887, and Merritt Griswold, in 1911, both mentioned that the Morning Star had played town ball. So we certainly knew that town ball, or some form of base ball, was being played in St. Louis prior to the introduction of the New York game. Now, however, we have contemporary evidence that the game was being played in 1860 and that it was a "revival" of a game played in the past.
The extent to which the game was played, how popular it was, and when it was first played in St. Louis remains unknown.