|David Lytton Reid|
"Chris Von der Ahe's old secretary, Dave Reed, was a valuable assistant to the boss, and being popular among the newspaper men, he settled many of the disputes that arose between the boss and the reporters," says Tom Brown. "Dave wielded a facile pen and knocked off many clever articles for the papers that advertised the German band far and wide. Dave was a genial soul, and often indulged in kite flying expeditions and red paint soirees. These periodicals of Dave's started Chris' temper, and he discharged the genial Dave as often as six times a month. He went to Comiskey once and said: 'Say, Commie, dot tem Dafe Reet is out again bainting der down. He can't keep sober two days in a bunch alreatty.' Comiskey said he knew a steady, temperate fellow out of a job, who would write better articles than Dave. 'Vot's his name?' said Chris. 'Shakespeare,' said Comiskey, 'and he is in a class by himself. Dave ain't in it with him. He wrote a great play, called "As You Like It.' Now Chris always held that Dave Reed was the most brilliant writer in America, and sure, though, he was on Dave, he wouldn't believe that any one was capable of spinning out the gems of thought that trickled from Dave's pen. 'Dot Shagespear you shpeak of, Commie, may be a good writer, but I don't gif a dem if he wrote "As You Like It," as 'Catch-as-catch-can,' or 'Vere You Tem Please,' he can't write such good stories as Dafe Reet. If Dave ain't sober tomorrow you can send Shagespear arount to der office, and I vill gif him a trial.'"-Washington Post, September 7, 1896
Putting aside the Von der Ahe nonsense, this little story does tell us quite a bit about David Reid. He was popular among newspaper men. He was genial and a bit eccentric. He liked to drink and his drinking interfered with his work. He was respected by Von der Ahe.
I think it's a bit rare to find this kind of information about the personality of someone who's a rather obscure 19th century baseball figure.