Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The Leather Is Sure To Fly

Dunlap will lead off for the Unions in tomorrow's game, and Shaeffer, Gleason, Dickerson, Rowe and Taylor will follow him. Here are six of the best batsmen in the country, and just now they are in fine fix. So the leather is sure to fly in to-morrow's game. Dickerson and Shaeffer are the only left-handed batsmen in the team.
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, April 5, 1884

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

I Was Wondering About The Horse

Over 1,000 persons visited the Union Grounds yesterday and watched the players of the Union team practice...

There will be four entrances to the Union Grounds open to-morrow [for the Maroons' first game]. One of these will be on Cass avenue, one on Twenty-fourth street and two on Jefferson avenue...

All day yesterday a horse was kept at work pulling a heavy front roller over the Union grounds. So as to prevent the horse from cutting up the ground, his feet were wrapped in pieces of old carpet.
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, April 5, 1884

I had kind of skimmed this article last week and wondered about the effect a horse would have on the field. Reading more thoroughly, I now know how to keep a horse from ripping up a baseball field. You learn something new everyday.

Monday, August 29, 2011

I Wonder Why?

The Browns are advertising heavier than ever before.
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, April 5, 1884

I looked around and didn't see a lot of evidence that the Browns were advertising more than usual going into the 1884 season. However, would it be surprising if they were? The Maroons represented a threat to Von der Ahe's monopoly on major league, professional baseball in St. Louis and I'm sure Von der Ahe didn't take that threat lightly, given the tenuous hold he had on that monopoly.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Lively Times

Among the visitors to the Union Grounds yesterday was Joe Carr, who once held a place in the directory of the original Brown Stocking team. "Why," said Mr. Carr, "I heard that these grounds were too small, and I expected to see a very small field, but you have all the room here you want. It's a splendid field and a magnificent stand."

The Cass Avenue Line intend putting away their bob-tails and running all double cars to the Union Grounds. Superintendent Cleveland, who visited the Lucas grounds yesterday, said: "We intend making lively times out here. Now we run out from the business portion to the Union Grounds in twenty-five minutes. We will soon reduce that time so that our cars will run out in twenty minutes."
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, April 4, 1884

Saturday, August 27, 2011

The Players Were All Out Practicing

The lovely weather of yesterday afternoon brought a great crowd to the Union Grounds. The players, attired in their dark blue uniforms, were all out practicing...

Dan Devinney will umpire Sunday's game between the Unions and Union Reserves...

The reporters' stand at the Union Grounds was put up yesterday, and is just large enough to accommodate the working members of the different dailies. Only working reporters need apply...

Superintendent Richards was at work all day on the diamond and base lines at the Union Grounds. The lines have been filled with a compost of clay and sand, and present a bounding, smooth and even surface...
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, April 4, 1884

Friday, August 26, 2011

Captain Dunlap

Dunlap will captain the Union Club, and will have charge of the nine while on the field. He will appoint his own lieutenants.
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, April 4, 1884

Thursday, August 25, 2011

25 Cents All Around

The chairs for the grand stand at the new Union Base Ball Park will not arrive here on time to be placed in position by Sunday next, and, consequently, 25 cents all around will be charged on that day, the regular reserved portion being thrown open to the field crowd.
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, April 3, 1884

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Recreants

Dunlap, Shaffer and the other deserters who failed to turn up for duty yesterday with their respective clubs are now black listed under the Day resolution. None of the recreants weakened.
-Cleveland Herald, April 2, 1884

I have to admit that I love the Herald's use of "recreant." Very impressive. While the Herald's editorial stance had mellowed a bit in March, as the season approached and they focused more on the Cleveland club, the still had plenty of bitterness and anger left.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The Black Sox

The Black Sox of St. Louis, the crack colored club, will be in the field again this season.
-Cleveland Herald, April 2, 1884

This a neat reference to the Black Stockings that I unexpectedly came across in the Herald. It's kind of cool to see the club getting random press outside of St. Louis.

Monday, August 22, 2011

I Know I Will Be Blacklisted

Most of the Union Association players who have deserted from the League and American are demanding three years' contracts with ample security from the Union managers. This very clearly indicates that the players have no faith in the Union, and propose to make themselves secure for the next three years at least, trusting that in the meantime something will turn up to give them relief.

"I know I will be blacklisted," said one of the deserters the other day, "but what do I care for that. I am fixed for three years on a big salary. It is just this: If the Union Association goes through and is a success I am all right; if it fails, why I have three years to work a reinstatement in the League or American, and in that time I have no doubt but that all bitterness will have died out and the deserters, as we are now called, will be welcomed back with outstretched arms to the association that now put us on the black list." That looks well enough for the players but it strikes us as rather rough on the clubs that will have to accede to their demands.-[Philadelphia Item.]
-Cleveland Herald, April 2, 1884

Sunday, August 21, 2011

The Jumpers

The following is a list of the League and American Association players who jumped the reserve rule and had the good sense and honor to stand by their written contracts with the Union Clubs: Bradley, with the Cincinnatis; Dunlap, Shaeffer and Jack Gleason, St. Louis; Hugh Daily, Chicago; Buck Weaver, Philadelphia, with a strong probability that Gross will also play with the Chicagos. There are only three deserters, Mullane, Mansell and Corcoran. Mansell regrets his perfidy, and told Bill Harbidge, who met him in Pittsburg the other day, that he was sorry he had not lived up to his contract with Mr. Lucas. This is not a bad record for the Union Association, considering the disreputable fight that has been made to induce players to desert.-[Cincinnati Enquirer.]
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, April 2, 1884

So the Unions got six guys to jump from the NL and the AA. While the Enquirer didn't think that was a bad record, given the effort that Lucas put into getting players, I don't see how it can be seen as anything other than a failure.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

A Palpable Falsehood

As the contracts of the St. Louis Browns and the reserve men went into effect yesterday and there was a full gathering of the forces at Sportsmen's Park at 3 p.m. Billy Gleason was on hand with the rest and took more than usual interest in matters. As regards the silly story that Mr. Von der Ahe had forbidden his men to visit the Lucas Park he indignantly denies it, and it is a palpable falsehood, as the men all know. Little Nicol is unreserved in his denial of the statement attributed to him. The men will be in practice every day and will continue to work from this to the close of the season, so that the ball may be said to be in active motion.
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, April 2, 1884

Friday, August 19, 2011

Base Ball At Jefferson Barracks

A game of base ball was played on Sunday, March 30, at company grounds, Jefferson Barrack, between Troop C base ball nine and a picked nine, composed of men from Troop A and B. The result was in favor of the Troop C nine, by a score of 8 to 5. The principal features of the game was long running catches by Murphy of Company C in right field and Johnson in the left field, and the splendid playing of Howard of Company C, both behind and at the bat. Courey, short stop of the same company, did some excellent playing. The picked nine made but six base hits off Parks' pitching. Brennan, of the picked nine, made a capital showing at second base. Austin, as short stop, and Scott, on first base, also guarded their positions with credit.
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, April 1, 1884

The fact that the Globe was running a story about a ballgame at J-B is an example of the extent of their baseball coverage as the 1884 season was beginning. Also, I'm posting this for my friends at the Missouri Civil War Museum, which is located at J-B.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Dunlap And Shaffer Arrive In St. Louis

President Lucas, of the Unions, was all smiles yesterday, and the occasions of his happiness was the arrival of Fred Dunlap and George Shaffer, the great second baseman and right fielder. "They are here," said he, "just as I knew they would be when I signed them. I never had a doubt about them, notwithstanding all the reports that have been circulated by the enemies of our association. The very first dealings I had with them convinced me that they were honorable men, ,who would honor any contract they signed. Now that they are here I think I can safely boast that I have the best second baseman and the best right fielder in the country. And you may say that as they have acted squarely with me I am going to do the same by them. If Mullane had done right with me he would never have had occasion to regret it, but now that he has jumped his contract, I will endeavor to make him sorry that he did so. Recently I learned he was willing to come here if I would give him a two years' contract at $3,000 a year. I have a prior claim on him and will not break a contract by taking him away from Toledo, so I sent him word that I would agree to his terms. When I got in direct communication with him what do you suppose he wanted? Only $3,000 in advance. Well, I don't think he'll get $3,000 of my money in his hands until he straightens out his record for trustworthiness."

Dunlap and Shaffer arrived at 7:30 a.m. on the Vandalia train, having come direct from Philadelphia, which they left on Saturday at 9 p.m. Apartments have been engaged for them on Jefferson avenue, near the Union grounds, and after a brief sojourn down town they repaired to their home for the season. In the afternoon a Globe-Democrat reporter met them at the club-room at the park. In reply to questions Shaffer said, "I came here because I signed to. The reserve rule don't worry me at all. I like Mr. Lucas' ways of doing business, and I am glad to see that he has such good grounds. I hope we will all be able to play good ball here and think we will. There is one thing sure: no other nine has such a nice club-house as we have."

Dunlap said he was somewhat tired after his long ride, but was glad he was here. "Our accommodations here," said he, "are the best that any club in the country has and then we have fine grounds, larger than three-fourths of the League grounds, and our grand stand is the finest I have seen anywhere. If the Cleveland Club had treated me right, I wouldn't be here."

"What are the circumstances of your engagement?"

"All there was to it was I named my terms to Mr. Lucas and he accepted them. Then when he was East this last time he came to me and asked me how I felt about being blacklisted by the Cleveland Club. I told him that I expected they would do something with me, and because base ball was my business I would like to play as long as I could, and for that reason would like to make a two-years' engagement with him. He said 'All right, I'll do it,' and did so, and I am here to play. I would have been here anyway to keep my first contract."

"Did President Appleton, of the Metropolitans, offer you $5,000 to play in New York?"

"Yes, but I never agreed to go there, nor even encouraged the offer. He asked me if I would not play in New York if he could get my release. I answered, 'You can't get my release.' He then asked, 'Will you give me the first chance if I get your release?' I answered again: 'You can't get my release.' 'I'll give you $5,000 if you will play in New York if I get your release,' said he. I repeated: 'You can't get my release.' He sent Lew Simmons to Cleveland, and Simmons found out just what I told Appleton, that they would not release me. Al Reach afterwards went to Cleveland without consulting me, and tried to get my release. I didn't know anything about it until Charley Mason told me of it a few days ago. Reach got the same answer that Simmons did."

"Did you name terms to Cleveland?"

"Yes, I asked $2,800 and they offered me $2,100."
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, April 1, 1884

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Cortes Maxwell

Corty Maxwell, who was born on November 17, 1851 in Alexandria, Missouri, is best remembered for having umpired three NA games in 1875. Maxwell was an amateur baseball player in St. Louis, where he grew up, and at Yale, where he graduated in 1877. The picture above is of the 1874 Yale baseball club and Maxwell is in the back row, second from the right. Maxwell had a long and prominent career as a newspaperman, most notably in Keokuk, Iowa. He died on December 19, 1925 and is buried in Keokuk.

That brief outline of his life really doesn't do justice to Cortes Maxwell. He was obviously an outstanding athlete, playing baseball with the Nationals in St. Louis and at Yale while also running track and field. Maxwell was prominent enough in the St. Louis baseball community to be chosen to umpire games for the Brown Stockings, although, according to press reports, he wasn't particularly good at it. He had a law degree from Yale but spent his life in the newspaper business, publishing newspapers in Warsaw, Illinois, and in Keokuk.

The things that interest me the most about Maxwell are the small details of his life. He was described as a "society beau" and you could follow the courting of his future wife and the arrangements for their wedding in the papers. In 1899, he introduced William Jennings Bryan at a political rally. I love stuff like that. While he may not have been the most important figure in baseball history, there's enough details about his life to create a three-dimensional portrait of the man.

Two notes: I want to thank Steve Smith for bringing Maxwell to my attention and I need to note that the above photo comes from the Yale University Manuscript and Archives Digital Image Database.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Shameless Self-Promotion

Major League Baseball Profiles, 1871-1900, is now available for pre-order from, as well as other fine book retailers. I happen to have my copy already and would recommend that you take advantage of Amazon's pre-order deal to get a great price on what is really a fantastic reference book. If you're interested in the history of 19th century baseball (and, since you're here reading this, I imagine that you are), you'll love it.

While I had a very small role in writing this thing, the vast majority of the credit for what should become one of the standard baseball history reference books goes to David Nemec, who put the project together and did most of the work. David did a great job with this thing and I'm impressed and happy with how it turned out.

Word on the street is that there will be a third volume out sometime next year and that volume will have an entry on Packy Dillon, which pleases me to no end. But you really shouldn't wait till then to get your copy of the first two volumes. Get 'em now while supplies last.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Not This Again

The Richmond, Va., Club deny that Ted Sullivan has been released from his promise to manage the team. He has signed with the St. Louis Unions and all his protestations of square dealing are denied by his act.
-Cleveland Herald, March 31, 1884

Yep, this again. The first mention in the newspapers that I've seen regarding Sullivan and the Richmond situation was on October 29, 1883. That was five full months before this mention in the Herald. I thought even the Herald had given up on this story but I was wrong and while their attacks on the UA had decreased in March, they still hadn't fully given up their "wreckers" editorial stance. But that's what I love about the Herald. Their stanch anti-UA editorial policy is a wonderful contrast to the Globe's pro-UA policy. As we get into the 1884 season itself, I'm going to miss the back and forth between the two papers.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

The Buffalo Base Ball Club

The St. Louis Buffalos (colored) have reorganized for the season of 1884, with the following players: A. Lewis, c.; P. Harris and C. Thompson, p.; W. Wallace, 1 b.; A. Hall, 2 b.; E. Thompson, 3 b.; J. Alexander, s.s.; D. Brown, r.f.; A. Bailey, c.f.; W. Hudson, Jr., l.f.; C. Churcill, substitute. Address challenges to E. Thompson, 1421 Orange street.
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, March 30, 1884

The Buffalos are a black club that I had never heard of before, so it was nice to find this. And it fits the general pattern of more coverage of the black clubs in the St. Louis papers during periods of increased baseball popularity in the city. With both the Browns and the Maroons creating excitement among St. Louis baseball fans, I'm hoping to see more coverage of the black clubs as I get into the 1884 season.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Solari At Work

The heavy eight ton roller was used all day yesterday on Sportsman's Park. The diamond is now as level as a table. Superintendent Solari has the base lines in fine condition. They will be covered with tarpaulins in wet weather, as will also the battery and batters' squares. The new growth of grass came up very quickly and the grounds are looking in their handsomest form.
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, March 30, 1884

I thought this was a rather unique look at the kind of things that August Solari did to get his field in shape for baseball. The infield tarp, according to best evidence, was an invention that Solari came up with for the 1884 season.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Dunlap Is On His Way! Plus: Lots Of Math!

Dunlap and Shaeffer, of the St. Louis Union Club, left Philadelphia last night and will arrive in St. Louis to-morrow morning. Roche leaves Chicago to-night and will be here tomorrow morning. This will complete the Union force. Beginning to-morrow morning, the Union players will report twice daily at Union Park, and in the morning they will practice from 10 to 12, and in the afternoon from 2:30 to 5:30. Manager Sullivan will play this nine in the opening game, the names being given in the regular batting order: Dunlap, second base; Shaeffer, right field; Dickerson, left field; Gleason, third base; Rowe, center field; Taylor, first base; Sullivan, catcher; Roche, short stop, and Werden, pitcher.

Next Sunday the Union Base Ball Park will be opened by the regular team playing a strong picked nine, which will include Baker, Whitehead, Hodnett, Quinn and others of the regular team.

Season tickets for the games at Union Park are now ready for circulation, and can be obtained at the office of Henry V. Lucas, at the corner of Fourth and Pine streets. The seats in the best part of the grand stand are to be numbered and sold in regular rotation, the first comers being the first served. There will be fifty-six championship games, and the season tickets entitling the holder to admission and reserved seat to all of these will be sold until April 19 at $22. This makes the regular price of the reserved seat 39 1/3 cents, or a reduction on the regular price of reserved seats 20 2/3 per cent. Besides the reserved seats, season tickets for the field and open seats will be sold for $11. This gives the holder fifty six admissions for 19 2/3 cents each. This is the cheapest base ball ever offered local patrons.
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, March 30, 1884

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Answering The Burning Questions Of A Curious Nation

The Union Association pays its umpires the magnificent sum of $40 a month and expenses.
-Cleveland Herald, March 30, 1884

For those who were wondering how much UA umpires got paid, there you go. Forty dollars in 1884 is approximately $920 today. That sounds like good money to me.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Houtz And Blong Return To Their Old Stomping Grounds

As the Lucas grounds are not yet completed, the club have accepted Mr. Kelly's generous offer of Compton Avenue Park to practice on during this week. Among the players practicing there yesterday were: Williamson, of the Chicago Whites; Houtz, of the Bay City nine; Jack Gleason, Rowe, Blong, Taylor, Dickerson, Hodnett, Whitehead, Werden and Manager Sullivan, of the Lucas professionals; Oberbeck, Cross, Bien and Manager Cassilly, of the Lucas Reserves.
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, March 27, 1884

It's kind of neat to see Charlie Houtz and Joe Blong, who played at the Compton Avenue Grounds with the Red Stockings a decade earlier, back together on their old grounds.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Billiard Tables And Bath Rooms

The reception room of the Union grounds will contain two billiard tables, which will be specially provided by President Lucas for the use of the ball players.

Well-appointed bath-rooms for the use of the members of the ball club and athletes who exercise at the Union grounds, will be one of the features of the place.
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, March 25, 1884

Monday, August 8, 2011

The Superintendent

The veteran pedestrian, William Richards, was on yesterday engaged by President Lucas to act as Superintendent of the Union Base Ball Park for one year from date. It is safe to say that no better selection could have been made. Besides having hosts of friends, Richards is energetic and capable, and his work will be a labor of love, for it is certainty that no man in the country has a stronger attachment for athletic sports nor a greater desire to promote them. His experience on the English pedestrian parks will be invaluable in directing the construction of the cinder path, work on which will shortly begin, and his knowledge of athletic training will enable him to render excellent service in conditioning the ball players for their work...The path to be constructed at the new grounds will be at least a fifth of a mile, with a straight hundred yard stretch at the finish, and will be adapted for bicycling as well as sprinting. The Thistle Foot-ball Club and very probably the Modoc Rowing Club's athletes will make Union Park their exercising grounds.
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, March 25, 1884

Sunday, August 7, 2011

It Will Be Very Popular

Fully 10,000 persons visited the new Lucas Park yesterday. There was an almost continuous stream of people passing in and out of the grounds from 9 o'clock in the morning until dark. Among the visitors were many of the oldest and most enthusiastic patrons of the national game to be found in the city. All agreed that the grounds were not only capacious, but beautiful, and that the appearance of the place indicated the the Union Association had "come to stay." Col John Scott's most ecstatic smile radiated throughout the Club House and beamed graciously on its patrons...

If the fine weather of yesterday continues, the Lucas Park grounds will soon be in perfect shape for an early opening. The diamond is finely sodded and work on the outfield will be rapidly pushed.

An unusually fine view of the whole enclosure in the Lucas Park can be gained from the reporters' stand at the upper pavilion of the grand stand. It will be very popular as a favorite spot during the season.
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, March 24, 1884

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Sparing Neither Effort Nor Expense

The Lucas Park is assuming an air of completion as the elegant grand stand and diamond, smooth as glass, are being rapidly put in a finished shape. A visit to the park yesterday showed an excellent state of affairs, and, if good weather comes this week, a great deal can be quickly done. The grand stand is wonderfully well constructed, and will hold its own with the best of similar structures. Henry Lucas is enthusiastic over the progress and prospects of the Union Association and is determined to spare neither effort nor expense in making his grounds attractive and giving the public first-class base ball. The formal opening of the park will occur on April 6, when the Unions and the Lucas Reserves will be arrayed against each other. On the 13th of April the Brennans, of New Orleans, are expected to tackle the Unions. April 19 will witness the opening of the Union Association schedule, the Chicago Unions, with Daily and Gross as their battery, crossing bats with the home nine.
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, March 23, 1884

Friday, August 5, 2011

Great Faith

Henry Lucas, it is stated, contributed $1,500 toward the support of the Union Club of Boston. He evidently has great faith in the ultimate success of the Union Association, of which he is the father.
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, March 19, 1884

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Poor Graffen

The following telegraph dispatch was received Thursday about noon:

Silver City, New Mexico, Nov. 8.
To Col. H.B. Blood:

Poor Graffen died at seven this morning of pneumonia. Will forward his remains to Keokuk to-day.
[Signed,] Jno. W. Smith.

Poor Graffen-Those who knew him can read between the lines of that message a story of brief but intense suffering and also a positive assurance that though far away from home and friends and all those he held most dear, he was not alone or uncared for. The first notice of his illness was received Wednesday about noon. Later a second message came saying that he was a little better. Then followed the sad announcement as above. No other particulars have been received except that the remains had been forwarded by express and would probably reach Keokuk Monday morning. With this expectation arrangements had been made for the funeral this afternoon, but for some reason the remains did not arrive, and the painful suspense is prolonged at least another day.

The Funeral.

It is confidently believed that the body will arrive either this evening or to-morrow morning, and the funeral services, unless there is further delay, will be held at the residence Col. H.B. Blood, brother-in-law of the deceased, corner of fifth and Franklin streets, Tuesday afternoon at 3 o'clock.

The pall bearers have been selected from the Boat Club, who kindly desired to pay this last tribute of respect to the memory of their first leader. Both Mr. and Mrs. Graffen are members of St. John's Episcopal church, but owing to the absence of Rev. R.C. McIlwain, the rector, the Rev. Dr. T.H. Cleland, pastor of Westminster Presbyterian church will officiate.

The Boat Club Resolutions.

The meeting of the Keokuk Rowing Club held last Saturday evening at their club rooms in the U.S. court rooms to pass resolutions of respect to his memory, was one of the largest attended meetings ever held by the club. The building has been draped in mourning ever since the sad news of his death reached the city.
-Keokuk Daily Gate City, November 12, 1883

Again, I have to thank Steve Smith for passing along this information about the death of Mase Graffen. It was great work on his part to find all of this.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Mase Graffen's Obituary

S.M. Graffen died at Silver City, New Mexico, yesterday morning. His last illness was of but a few days duration. The first intelligence of his sickness was received by his wife in this city, by telegraph, Wednesday. The dispatch was in substance that Mr. Graffen was dangerously ill with pneumonia. A second telegram announced that he was better and the third received yesterday told of his death and the forwarding of the remains to Keokuk. The interment will be either here or at Philadelphia. Mrs. Graffen and children have been visiting her sister, Mrs. Col. Blood, for several months, and Mr. Graffen, while in the city on a visit two weeks ago, arranged to spend the winter in Keokuk. He was auditor of the Silver City, Deming & Pacific railway, with headquarters at Silver City. Mr. Graffen lived in Keokuk a number of years and was in the general office of the Keokuk and St. Louis Line, where he filled at different times the position of superintendent's secretary, accountant and purchasing agent and was last in the freight department under J.H. Best. He was thoroughly familiar with and expert in railway office work. The organization of the Keokuk Rowing Club in 1878 was chiefly the work of Mr. Graffen and he trained the first barge crew and saw them come out victorious. The rooms of the rowing club were draped in mourning by the members yesterday, after hearing of the death of their first leader. The family of the deceased have the sympathy of the entire community.
-Keokuk Daily Constitution, November 9, 1883

A big hat tip to Steve Smith for passing along this obituary of Mase Graffen. This is something that I've been looking for the last couple years, without luck. I had often wondered what Graffen was doing in New Mexico and how his body got back to Keokuk. Now I know and so do you. I can't thank Steve enough.

Graffen, of course, was the business manager of the Brown Stockings in 1875 and their field manager in 1876.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

S. Mason Graffen, Cricketeer

The Olympian Cricket Club reorganized their Association, which was disbanded at the commencement of the war, on Monday last, by the election of the following officers-President, Chas. G. Lister; Vice-President, Horatio H. Walker; Secretary and Treasurer, S. Mason Graffen; Captain of Field, Harry Lex...The grounds are located at Eighth and Cooper streets, Camden.
-Philadelphia Inquirer, May 4, 1865

We knew that Mase Graffen played cricket in Philadelphia but all the evidence that I've seen was second-hand. Here we have some primary source material establishing for a fact that Graffen was a Philadelphia cricketeer.

Monday, August 1, 2011

The Search For A Great Battery

Lucas has not yet secured the great "battery" that was to startle the base ball world. Millionaires can do many things, but then there are a few things they cannot do, and bribing noted ball players is one of them.-[Cincinnati Commercial Gazette.]
-Cleveland Herald, March 18, 1884

I pass this along because Lucas' search for a pitcher and catcher was one of the storylines of the offseason. And here we are in March of 1884 and that search was still ongoing.