Sunday, April 3, 2011

The 1884 Maroons: A New Athletic Club

Articles of incorporation of the St. Louis Athletic Association were filed in the office of the Recorder of Deeds yesterday. The capital stock of the Association is $15,000, divided in 600 shares of $25 each, held by the following parties: H.V. Lucas, 200, Theodore Benoist, 50, and Fred F. Epenschied, 350. The object of the association is stated to be to develop athletic sports. It is said the association proposes to start a base ball park.
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, November 3, 1883

I think we've seen some rather interesting stuff so far as we begin our look at the 1884 Maroons and at some point, when the plans for the club and the UA solidify, I'll stop and go over all of that. But this is interesting for a few reasons. First, there's the matter of that photograph in the Spalding Collection of the 1886 Maroons. It just happens to be labeled as being a photo of the St. Louis Athletic Association and this article in the Globe tells us why that is. The St. Louis Athletic Association was Lucas' answer to the Sportsmans' Park and Club Association.

The other interesting thing here is that Lucas didn't own the majority of shares in the St. Louis Athletic Association, at least at the time it was incorporated. We'll see if that changes in the future. At the time of incorporation, the majority shareholder was Fred Epenschied, who I believe was Lucas' brother-in-law. After Lucas resigned as president of the Maroons in August of 1886, Epenschied took over his interest in the club. I also know of other investors, such as Ellis Wainwright and Adolphus Busch, but that's getting ahead of the story and we'll just see how this all works out.

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