Wednesday, February 3, 2010

The Role Of Civic Pride In The Development Of Professional Baseball In St. Louis

I'm going to pass along this article I found about the role that civic pride played in the development of professional baseball in St. Louis in the postbellum era. I thought it was interesting and figured that you might like to take a look at it. Rather than post excerpts from the article, I encourage you to read the whole thing (and, just so you know, it's a pdf file rather than a web page). It was written by Gregg Lee Carter and appeared in the Missouri Historical Bulletin in July of 1975.

Okay, I'll post one little excerpt:

Continually striving to maintain her mythic self-image, post-bellum St. Louis began to manipulate every possible symbol that could both denigrate Chicago and dub her "The Future Great City of the World." Ludicrous as it may seem, baseball became one of these symbols. When St. Louis defeated Chicago on the diamond, her pride swelled. Her victory was just another testimony "to the supremacy of the Western city with the greatest population, the most flourishing trade, and the biggest bridge..."

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