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A Working Chronology
Note: This chronology lists known reports of ballplaying by soldiers during the Civil War years. Where details are uncertain or missing, an entry’s “Note” mentions that. Additional information is welcome from users. To supply such data, or to comment on errors in the text, contact Protoball via Larry McCray. Entries are listed by first year of the event[s] reported in a source. Where possible, they are listed chronologically within the cited year.
Many of the more informative and interesting Civil War entries are included in the current version of the full Protoball chronology, which will ultimately trace data on safe-haven ballplaying up to the beginning of the professional era .
1861.1 Chadwick Tries to Start Richmond VA Team, but the Civil War Intervenes
Bill Hicklin notes (email of Feb 4, 2016) that "Chadwick visited his wife's family frequently and was disappointed that, as of the verge of the Civil War, there appeared to be no base ball clubs there at all."
Ward, Geoffrey C., and Ken Burns, Baseball: An Illustrated History [Knopf, 1994], p.12, no ref given.
John Thorn, email of 2/10/2008, suggests that Beadle may have more detail.
Schiff, Millen, and Kirsch also cite Chadwick's attempt, but do not give a clear date, or a source.
Is there a primary source for this claim?
1861.15 First Sunday in the Army: "Ball-playing, Wrestling, and Some Cards
In early May 1861, the new 13th Illinois Regiment assembled in East St. Louis IL. Writing of the first Sabbath in the camp, the veterans later said "There was drill: so the notion of the leaders ran. A better view obtains now. There was ball-playing and wrestling and some card-playing, but that [just the card-playing?] was generally regarded as out of order."
Military History and Reminiscences of the Thirteenth Regiment of the Illinois Volunteer Infantry (Woman's Temperance Publishing, Chicago, 1892), page 10. PBall file: CW-122.
This may be the first recorded instance of ballplaying by Civil War soldiers.
1861.16 NY Regiment Plays "Favorite Game" After Dress Parade in Elmira NY
"After [the camp's dress] parade, which generally lasted about an hour, the camp was alive with fun and frolic . . . leap-frog, double-duck, foot and base-ball or sparring, wrestling, and racing, shared their attention."
A visitor to the camp wrote the next day, "I was not surprised . . . to see how extensively the amusements which had been practiced in their leisure hours in the city [Buffalo?], were continued in camp. Boxing with gloves, ball-playing, running and jumping, were among these. The ball clubs were well represented here, and the exercise of their favorite game is carried on spiritedly by the Buffalo boys." [page 43.] PBall file: CW-123.
J. Harrison Mills, Chronicles of the Twenty-First Regiment, New York Volunteers (21st Veteran Assn., Buffalo, 1887), page 42.
The newly-formed regiment, evidently raised in the Buffalo area, was at camp in Elmira in May 1861 in this recollection, and would deploy to Washington in June.
1861.18 Confederate Base Ball Players Finds Field "Too Boggy" in VA
"Confederate troops played townball as well as more modern versions of the game in their army camps. In November 1861 the Charleston Mercury of South Carolina reported that Confederate troops were stuck in soggy camps near Centreville, Fairfax County, [northern] Virginia. Heavy rains created miserably wet conditions so that 'even the base ball players find the green sward in front of the camp, too boggy for their accustomed sport.'" Centreville is adjacent to Manassas/Bull Run. 40,000 Confederate troops under Gen. Johnson had winter quarters there [the town's population had been 220] in 1861/62.
Charleston Mercury, November 4, 1861, page. 4, column 5. Mentioned without citation in Kirsch, Baseball in Blue and Gray (Princeton U, 2003), page 39. PBall file: CW-6
1861.19 Second NJ Regiment Forms BB Club in Virginia Camp
[A] A six-inning game of base ball was played at Camp Seminary on Saturday November 16, 1861. The 2nd NJ challenged the 1st NJ and prevailed. A member of the 2nd NJ sent a short report and box to the Newark newspaper.
[B] Members of the 2nd New Jersey regiment formed the Excelsior club, evidently named for the Newark Excelsior [confirm existence?] in late November 1861. A report of an intramural game between Golder's side and Collins' side appeared in a Newark paper. The game, won 33-20 by the Golder contingent, lasted 6 innings and took four hours to play. The correspondent concludes: "The day passed off pleasantly all around, and I think every one of us enjoyed ourselves duely [sic?]. We all hope to be at home one year hence to dine with those who love us. God grant it!"
[A] "A Game of Ball in the Camp," Newark Daily Advertiser, November 20 1861. PBall file: CW7.
[B] Newark Daily Advertiser, 12/4/1861. PBall file: CW8.
Camp Seminary was located near Fairfax Seminary in Alexandria VA, near Washington DC.
One may infer that the 2nd NJ remained at winter quarters in Alexandria VA at this time, providing protection to Washington.
1861.20 Confederate Soldier's Diary Reports on Town Ball Playing, 1861-1863
December 1861 (Texas?): "There is nothing unusual transpiring in Camp. The boys are passing the time playing Town-Ball."
January 1862 (Texas?): "All rocking along finely, Boys playing Town-Ball"
March 1863 (USA prison camp, IL?): The Rebels have at last found something to employ both mind and body; as the parade ground has dried up considerably in the past few days, Town Ball is in full blast, and it is a blessing for the men."
March 1863 (USA prison camp, IL?): "Raining this morning, which will interfere with ball playing, but the manufacture of rings 'goes bravely on,' and I might say receives a fresh impetus by the failure of the 'Town-ball' business."
W. W. Heartsill, Fourteen Hundred and 91 Days in the Confederate Army: A Journal Kept by W. W. Heartsill: Day-by-Day, of the W. P. Lane (Texas) Rangers, from April 19th 1861 to May 20th 1865. Submitted by Jeff Kittel, 5/12/09. Available online at The American Civil War: Letters and Diaries Database, at http://solomon.cwld.alexanderstreet.com/. PBall file: CW10.
Heartsill joined Lane's Texas Rangers early in the War at age 21. He was taken prisoner in Arkansas in early 1862, and exchanged for Union prisoners in April 1863. He then joined Bragg's Army in Tennessee, and was assigned to a unit put in charge of a Texas prison camp of Union soldiers. There are no references to ballplaying after 1863.
manufacture of rings?
1861.21 Future Nurse Muses on Enlistees Playing Ball
At the very outset of war, Sophronia Bucklin [born 1828] felt herself driven to serve future wounded soldiers in the Union Army: “From the day on which the first boom of the first cannon rolled over the startled waters in Charleston harbor, it was my constant study how I cold with credit to myself get into military service to the Union.” She does not cite a date for this scene.
She subsequently got her chance. “Sitting at a window at a window in the Orphan Asylum at Auburn, New York, conversing with Mrs. Reed, the kindly matron, and watching the newly enlisted soldiers of the adjacent area, at a game of ball near the camp, I said, ‘I wish I knew of some way to get into the military service just to take care of boys such as those, when they shall need it.’” It turned out that Mrs. Reed knew a way [via the Soldier’s Aid Society], and Bucklin became a nurse in July 1862, serving through the war.
Sophronia E. Bucklin, In Hospital and Camp: A Woman’s Record of Thrilling Incidents Among the Wounded in the Late War (Potter and Company, Philadelphia, 1869), pp. 35-36. Viewed at Google Books 5/27/09, via the search <bucklin camp>.
1861.25 Brooklyn Soldiers Play Ball “in Seccesia”
“In October 1861 a ‘bold soldier boy’ sent the Clipper an account of a baseball game played by prominent Brooklyn club members on the parade ground of the ‘Mozart Regiment, now in Secessia.’” The Mozart Regiment was the 40th NY volunteers, and originally comprised men from the NYC area. The writer added that the were times when the men were “engaged in their old familiar sports, totally erasing from their minds the all-absorbing topic of the day.” It appears that the regiment was in northernmost Virginia in October 1861, defending Washington.
Attributed to a soldier, apparently, in an article in the New York Clipper, October 26, 1861, page 220, (per Kirsch book)
1861.26 Confederate Base Ball Players Finds Field “Too Boggy” in VA
“Confederate troops played townball as well as more modern versions of the game in their army camps. In November 1861 the Charleston Mercury of South Carolina reported that Confederate troops were stuck in soggy camps near Centreville, Fairfax County, [northern] Virginia. Heavy rains created miserably wet conditions so that ‘even the base ball players find the green sward in front of the camp, too boggy for their accustomed sport.’” Centreville is adjacent to Manassas/Bull Run. 40,000 Confederate troops under Gen. Johnson had winter quarters there [the town’s population had been 220] in 1861/62.
Source: Charleston Mercury, November 4, 1861, page. 4, column 5. Mentioned without citation in Kirsch, Baseball in Blue and Gray (Princeton U, 2003), page 39.
1861.27 Second NJ 27, First NJ 10, in Virginia Camp
A six-inning game of base ball was played at Camp Seminary on Saturday November 16, 1861. The 2nd NJ challenged the 1st NJ and prevailed. A member of the 2nd NJ sent a short report and box to the Newark newspaper.
Source: “A Game of Ball in the Camp,” Newark Daily Advertiser, November 20 1861. Facsimile submitted by John Zinn, 3/10/09. Camp Seminary was located near Fairfax Seminary in Alexandria VA, near Washington DC.
1861.28 2nd NJ Forms “Excelsior Base Ball Club”
Members of the 2nd New Jersey regiment formed the Excelsior club, evidently named for the Newark Excelsior [confirm existence?] in late November 1861. A report of an intramural game between Golder’s side and Collins’ side appeared in a Newark paper. The game, won 33-20 by the Golder contingent, lasted 6 innings and took four hours to play. The correspondent concludes: “The day passed off pleasantly all around, and I think every one of us enjoyed ourselves duely [sic?]. We all hope to be at home one year hence to dine with those who love us. God grant it!”
One may infer that the 2nd NJ remained at winter quarters in Alexandria VA at this time, providing protection to Washington. Facsimile submitted by John Zinn, 3/10/09. Source: Newark Daily Advertiser, 12/4/1861.
1861.29 3rd NH Celebrates Thanksgiving in SC “In Playing Ball, Turkey Shooting”
Writing to the editor of the Manchester NH Farmer’s Cabinet, a soldier Mudsill noted that while awaiting further orders on the South Carolina island of Port Royal in November 1861, the 3rd NH observed a “regular, old-fashioned New England Thanksgiving Thursday, away down here in Dixie?” The pumpkin pies and plum pudding were missing, but “the day was passed in playing ball, turkey shooting, and in the afternoon a pole was erected and the regimental flag run up, amid a thousand cheers.” He does not further describe the ball game.
Source: “Our Army Correspondence: Letter from the N. H. Third,” Farmer’s Cabinet, December 12, 1861.. Accessed via Genealogybank subscription, 5/21/09.
1861.30 Confederate Soldier’s Diary Reports on Town Ball Playing, 1861-1863
December 1861 (Texas?): “There is nothing unusual transpiring in Camp. The boys are passing the time playing Town-Ball.”
January 1862 (Texas?): “All rocking along finely, Boys playing Town-Ball”
March 1863 (USA prison camp, IL?): The Rebels have at last found something to employ both mind and body; as the parade ground has dried up considerably in the past few days, Town Ball is in full blast, and it is a blessing for the men.”
March 1863 (USA prison camp, IL?): “Raining this morning, which will interfere with ball playing, but the manufacture of rings ‘goes bravely on,’ and I might say receives a fresh impetus by the failure of the ‘Town-ball’ business.”
Source: W. W. Heartsill, Fourteen Hundred and 91 Days in the Confederate Army: A Journal Kept by W. W. Heartsill: Day-by-Day, of the W. P. Lane (Texas) Rangers, from April 19th 1861 to May 20th 1865. Submitted by Jeff Kittel, 5/12/09. Available online at The Ameridcan Civil War: Letters and Diaries Database, at http://solomon.cwld.alexanderstreet.com/. Heartsill joined Lane’s Texas Rangers early in the War at age 21. He was taken prisoner in Arkansas in early 1862, and exchanged for Union prisoners in April 1863. He then joined Bragg’s Army in Tennessee, and assigned to a unit put in charge of a Texas prison camp of Union soldiers. There are no references to ballplaying after 1863. Query: “manufacture of rings?”
1861.31 RI Soldier Mentions Game of Ball
“December 18th: Many of the boys had a revival of their school days in a game of ball. These amusements had much to do in preventing us from being homesick and were productive, also, of health and happiness.” The unit was stationed at Camp Webb, near Alexandria VA. No further description of the rules or play are given. Note: can we find the location of the 1st Regiment in late 1861? Are there other accounts of this unit that may add details to this account?
Source: George Lewis, The History of Battery E, First Regiment, Rhode Island Lioght Artillery (Snow and Farmham, Providence, 1892), page 26. Adduced in Kirsch, Baseball in Blue and Gray, page 33. Lewis makes no other mention of ballplaying in this history.
1861.32 Union General Refers to “Long Ball”
“Our light artillery rapidly gained position within range and the firing became general. The main body of our army [were] passive spectators of this game of ‘long ball,’ but not without partaking of its dangers.”
Alexander Hays, “Letter from Alexander Hays, 1861,” in Life and Letters of Alexander Hays, Brevet Colonel United States Army (publisher? date?), page 708. Provided by Jeff Kittel, 5/12/09. Not available online May 2009. Jeff notes that Hays was a Union general from PA who was killed in the Battle of the Wilderness in May 1864. Available online at The American Civil War: Letters and Diaries Database, at http://solomon.cwld.alexanderstreet.com/.
Query: Was Hays using a literal reference to the game of long ball, or was this a general analogy used at the time?
1861.34 Regiment Plays “Favorite Game” After Dress Parade in Elmira NY
“After [the camp’s dress] parade, which generally lasted about an hour, the camp was alive with fun and frolic . . . leap-frog, double-duck, foot and base-ball or sparring, wrestling, and racing, shared their attention.”
J. Harrison Mills, Chronicles of the Twenty-First Regiment, New York Volunteers (21st Veteran Assn., Buffalo, 1887), page 42. The newly-formed regiment, evidently raised in the Buffalo area, was at camp in Elmira in May 1861 in this recollection, and would deploy to Washington in June. A visitor to the camp wrote the next day, “I was not surprised . . . to see how extensively the amusements which had been practiced in their leisure hours in the city [Buffalo?], were continued in camp. Boxing with gloves, ball-playing, running and jumping, were among these. The ball clubs were well represented here, and the exercise of their favorite game is carried on spiritedly by the Buffalo boys.” [page 43.]
1861.35 Awaiting Deployment to Washington, the 44th NY Plays Ball Evenings
1861: While the regiment trained at an Albany facility in September, a local newspaper noted: “They are under drill six hours during the day . . . Their leisure hours are devoted in great part to athletic exercises, fencing, boxing, and ball-playing, while their evenings are passed in singing, a glee club having been formed.” [page 17]. In a Virginia camp near Washington, “Christmas day of 1861 was given up to the enlisted men. They played ball in the morning and in the afternoon organized a burlesque parade which was very comical” [page 56].
1863: The regiment was near Culpepper in September. “Capt. B. K. Kimberly was an experienced and skillful base ball player and took the lead in inaugurating a series of games of base ball” [page166].
Captain Eugene A. Nash, A History of the Forty-fourth Regiment, New York Infantry (Donnelley and Sons, Chicago, 1911).
1864: In a May 25th letter to his sister from “Near White’s Tavern,” Sgt Orsell Brown noted “Monday [May] 2d I felt poorly. . . . The officers of he Brigade had a great game of ball in the afternoon, in front of our Reg’t.” Provided by Michael Aubrecht, May 15, 2009.
1861.36 Confederate Soldier Reports “Several Kinds of Ball”
“The troops enjoyed a variety of sports, ‘some of which are harder than any work I ever saw,’ observed a Louisiana soldier at Columbus. Among them were footraces, several kinds of ball, wrestling, climbing trees and a herculean game in which a cannonball was hurled into one of nine holes in the ground.”
Larry J. Daniel, Soldiering in the Army of the Tennessee: A Portrait of Life in a Confederate Army (U of North Carolina Press, 1991), page 90. Daniel evidently attributes this to the New Orleans Crescent, October 29, 1861. He does not give the location or regiment involved. Note: can we locate the article? There was a juvenile English game called None Holes.
1861.38 Base Ball at an Illinois Fort
A 5-16-61 letter sent from Camp Scott, a training facility at Freeport, IL, from a soldier named Tyler in the 15th Illinois Infantry, relates that the solders are playing base ball in camp.
Email from Bruce Allardice, 3/12/2013. No source given.
[A] "BASE BALL. The excitement incident to the new and warlike attitude of our national affairs also monopolized the attention of everybody during the past week; and out-door sports, like everything else, were for the time forgotten."
[B] "BASE BALL'. For the time being, base ball is almost entirely laid aside. Not one of the senior clubs has yet mustered sufficient numbers on the regular play-days to have a game...Several of the clubs have, we understand, resolved to postpone regular field exercise until after the Fourth of July."
[A] New York Sunday Mercury, April 21, 1861
[B] New York Sunday Mercury, April 28, 1861
1861.40 Shortstops to Soldiers
[A] "BASE BALL...So many of the best players, belonging to the first nines of the more prominent base ball clubs, have enlisted and gone with different regiments to the seat of war, that there will be some difficulty in getting up any matches of special interest this season."
[B] "BASE BALL...Hundreds of the best base all players in the States are now withing or on their way to Washington, ready to prove to the world, that while in times of peace they are enthusiastic devotees of the National Game, they are no less ready, in time of war, to make any sacrifice..."
[C] "CONTRIBUTIONS TO THE WAR.-- The Star and Exercise Clubs, of Brooklyn, have together contributed nearly forty volunteers for the war. Good boys!"
[A] New York Sunday Mercury, April 28, 1861
[B] New York Sunday Mercury, May 5, 1861
[C] New York Sunday Mercury, May 26, 1861
1861.41 Base Ball A Silver Lining
[A] "The first base ball match of the season came off yesterday...It was thought that cannon balls would supersede base balls this season-- that our meetings and delightful measures would be exchanged for the pride, pomp, and circumstances of glorious war, but even in their ashes live our wonted fires, and though faint and few, we are fearless still. The event of yesterday is therefore generally regarded as a promising sign of the times."
[B] "THE HOBOKEN BASE BALL CLUBS.-- The ball grounds at the Elysian Fields, Hoboken, begin to wear a very lively look...Several important matches are nearly arranged...The return of the Seventh, National Guard, added a reinforcement of some forty members to our prominent base ball clubs."
[A] Brooklyn Daily Eagle, June 6, 1861
[B] Wilkes' Spirit of the Times, June 16, 1861
1861.42 Welcome Back
Ball in the Culture, Civil War
[A] "THE RETURN OF THE 13TH REGIMENT. MEETING OF BASE BALL PLAYERS. A meeting of one delegate from each base ball club of this city will meet at Paul ,Mead's, No. 1 Willoughby street, this evening, to make arrangements for receiving the base ball players connected with the 13th Regt."
[B] "RETURN OF THE 13TH REGIMENT. THE BASE BALL CLUBS. The Base-Ball Clubs were fully represented (13 clubs listed)...The clubs all formed on Furman street, right resting on Fulton. Each member was provided with a badge, bearing the motto, 'Base-Ball, Fraternity'. They occupied the advance of the column."
[A] Brooklyn Daily Eagle, July 29, 1861
[B] Brooklyn Daily Eagle, July 30, 1861
1861.44 Optimism Despite War
Civil War, Newspaper Coverage
[A] "BASE BALL. The season which is now drawing to a close-- though its opening was not very propitious, owing to the breaking out of the existing rebellion, and the consequent diversion of the minds of all classes to matters of serious import-- has been characterized by a number of very interesting matches, and has afforded some very pleasant entertainment...Though no marked improvement was evidenced in the general playing of the past season, nearly every club has come up to the standard of the preceding year, while several...have presented stronger nines than they have ever before put into the field."
[B] "...the base ball season of 1861...has really been a very interesting year in the annals of the game, far more so than it was expected it would have been in the early part of it; but the game has too strong a foothold in popularity to be frowned out of favor by the lowering brows of 'grim-visaged war,' and if any proof was needed that our national game is a fixed institution of the country, it would be found in the fact that it has flourished through such a year of adverse circumstances..."
[A] New York Sunday Mercury, Nov. 17, 1861
[B] New York Clipper, Jan. 11, 1862
The sporting weeklys' optimism ignores the great decline in the number of clubs and games both in Greater New York City and in the cities to which the game had spread by the end of 1860. In most places interclub play ceased.
1861.45 Shrunken NABBP Meeting Does Little
Business of Baseball, Civil War
"BASE BALL. Annual Meeting of the National Association of Base Ball Players....The attendance of delegates was not so large as we had hope to see..the delegates of thirty-one clubs answered to their names...The Committee on Rules...reported that they had no changes in the Rules to recommend...only one proposition had been submitted to them (discussion of a proposition to change the rule for deciding the outcome of a game called by darkness was tabled; a resolution to donate the Association's surplus funds to war relief was also tabled, as the funds were small...the existing rebellion, which has enlisted amny base-ball players in the service of the country, has had a tendency to temporarily disorganize many of the base ball clubs."
New York Sunday Mercury, Dec. 15, 1861
Three clubs were admitted to the Association; of 80 existing members, nine were expelled due to non-payment of dues for two years, and 27 more listed who had not paid for 1861.
1861.46 37th Illinois plays in camp in Springfield
Wilder's History of the 37th Illinois, p. 30: "The officers and men of the [Waukegan] company were reported as playing baseball amidst beautiful weather."
This book cites a letter home by a soldier to the Waukegan Weekly Gazette, May 7, 1861. The unit was in camp near Springfield.
Waukegan had baseball as early as 1859.
Waukegan Weekly Gazette, May 7, 1861
1862.1 Brooklyn Games Organized as Benefits for Sick and Wounded Soldiers
Three games were announced in June 1862 for which net proceeds would be used for sick and wounded Union soldiers. The Eckfords and the Atlantics would play for a silver ball donated by the Continental Club. William Cammeyer provided the enclosed Union grounds without charge. Admission fees of 10 cents were projected to raise $6000 for soldiers' relief. The Eckford won the Silver Ball by winning two of three games.
"Relief for the Sick and Wounded," Brooklyn Eagle, June 21, 1862, page 2.
Craig Waff, "The 'Silver Ball' Game-- Eckfords vs. Atlantics at the Union Grounds", in Inventing Baseball: The 100 Greatest Games of the 19th Century (SABR, 2013), pp. 39-42
1862c.1 Base Ball Listed Among Sports in NH Regimental History
“There was, also, no lack of athletic sports, such as jumping, pitching quoits, wrestling, etc., with now and then, in the regiments favorably stationed in forts or on garrison duty, a game of base ball, although this game was not then, as now , the craze of the day.”
Asa. W. Bartlett, History of the Twelfth Regiment, New Hampshire Volunteers (Ira C. Evans, Concord NH, 1897), page 356. Accessed 7/8/09 on Google Books via “bartlett ‘twelfth regiment’” search. This passage is a generic account of camp life, and seems to have no time period associated with it; in fact, it is not entirely clear from this account that the 12th NH itself played the game. The 12th saw major battles including Chancellorsville and Gettysburg, and ended the war in the trenches around Richmond.
1862c.2 CSA Prisoners Said to Learn Base Ball from “New Orleans Boys”
“The New Orleans boys also carried base balls in their knapsacks. A few of them found themselves in a Federal prison stockade on the Mississippi. The formed a club. Confederate prisoners from Georgia and South Carolina watched them, got the hang of it and organized for rivalry. In the East and West Series that followed the West won triumphantly by unrecorded scores.”
Will Irwin, Collier’s Weekly, May 8, 1909, as attributed in A. G. Spalding, America’s National Game (American Sports Publishing, 1911), pp. 96-97. Kirsch also cites the Irwin source. Note: can we deduce what prison is described, and obtain an original source? Were the New Orleans soldiers prisoners [and the “West” team?] or prison guards? Are there clues [or other stories] to be found in the original Collier’s piece?
1862c.3 Marylander Sees Officers Play Base Ball
“[A] wheelbarrow race and a contest to catch two greased pigs rounded out the Christmas Day festivities for a soldier from Maryland, after he witnessed the officers of his company play three innings of baseball.”
Patricia Millen, From Pastime to Passion: Baseball and the Civil War (Heritage, 2001), page 23. Millen’s citation: John Cumming, Runners and Walkers: A Nineteenth Century Sports Chronicle (Regnary Gateway, Chicago, 1981), page 65. Full text of this book is unavailable online July 2009: a snippet view on Google Books via “’runners and walkers’ 1981” search does not include a reference to the officers’ game, nor indicate a time or year for a Christmas celebration.
1862.13 Government Survey: Athletic Games Forestall Woes of Soldiers Gambling
After examining nearly 200 regiments, the Sanitary Commission [it resembled today's Red Cross] was reported to have found that "in forty-two regiments, systematic athletic recreations (foot ball, base ball, &c) were general. In one hundred and fifty-six, there were none. Where there were none, card playing and other indoor games took their place. This invited gambling abuses, it was inferred.
"War Miscellanies. Interesting Army Statistics," Springfield [MA] Republican, January 25, 1862. Accessed via Genealogybank, 5/21/09. PBall file: CW13.
is it worth inspecting the report itself in search of further detail? It is not available online in May 2009.
1862.14 22nd MA beats 13th NY in the Massachusetts Game
"Fast Day (at home) April 3, there was no drill, and twelve of our enlisted men challenged an equal number from the Thirteenth New York, to a game of base-ball, Massachusetts game. We beat the New-Yorkers, 34 to 10."
J. L. Parker and R. G. Carter, History of the Twenty-Second Massachusetts Infantry (The Regimental Association, Boston, 1887), pages 79-80.
Fast Day in MA was traditionally associated with ballplaying. The 22nd MA, organized in Lynnfield MA (about 15 miles N of Boston), was camped at Falmouth VA in April, as was the 13th NY. The 13th was from Rochester and would likely have known the old-fashioned game. PBall file: CW-126.
1862.15 NY and MA Regiments Play Two Games Near the Civil War Front
Mr. Jewell, from the 13th NY Regiment's Company A, provided a generous [15 column-inches] account of two regulation NY-rules games played on April 15, 1862, near the Confederate lines at Yorktown VA. Sharing picket duties with members of the 22nd MA Regiment, Jewell says that "at about half-past 10 o'clock some one proposed a game of Base Ball. Sides were chosen and it commenced." [As scorer, Jewell's box scores did not mark the sides as a contest between regiments, and it may have involved mixed teams. He did note that the leadoff batter/catcher for the "Scott" side was a member of Boston's Trimountain Base Ball Club.] "It was decidedly 'cool' to play a game of Base Ball in sight of the enemy's breastworks." Between games the ball was re-covered with leather from a calf boot found on the ground. During the afternoon game, Union troops in the area were evidently sending artillery fire out toward the Rebs as they were building new fortifications in the distance. General McClelland's entourage is reported to have passed toward the front while the game was in progress. Jewell sent his account to the Rochester paper. The two games, each played to a full mine innings, were won by Scott's side, 13-9 and 14-12.
Source: Rochester Union and Advertiser, April 24, 1862, page 2, column 2. PBall file: CW16.
1862.16 13th Massachusetts Plays Ball Near Officers, Dignitaries, Enemy Lines
"In the afternoons, after battalion drill, the game of base-ball daily occupied the attention of the boys. On one of these occasions, General Hartsuff riding by, got off his horse and requested permission to catch behind the bat, informing us there was nothing he enjoyed so much. He gave it up after a few minutes and rode away, having made a very pleasant impression."
Davis also mentions a game of ball being played in April 1863 as large numbers of troops were awaiting a formal review by President Lincoln and Secretary of War Stanton near the Potomac River, "to the no small amusement of the lookers-on" [page 198]. In November 1863, still in Virginia, Davis reports that while awaiting an order to attack a nearby Confederate force, "Time dragged along, and no movement was made. We were all tired of the inaction and the heavy strain on the mind from hours of expectation, and so we had a game of ball to pass away the time. Occasionally the ball would be batted over the crest of the hill in front, in range of the rebel skirmishers, necessitating some one going after it. It was a risky piece of business and required quick work, but it was got every time." [page 288.]
In March 1864, the 13th played the 104th NY and won 62-20. "As opportunities for indulging our love for this pastime were not very frequent, we got a deal of pleasure out of it." [page 309.] Later that month, the regiment celebrated the escape and return the colonel of the 16th Maine with base-ball, along with chasing greased pigs and a sack race. [Page 313.]
Charles E. Davis, Jr., Three Years in the Army: The Story of the Thirteenth Massachusetts Volunteers (Estes and Lauriat, Boston MA, 1894), page 56. The full text was accessed on 6/1/09 on Google books via a search for "'Charles E. Davis' three". PBall file: CW20.
Also cited in Kirsch, Baseball in Blue and Gray (Princeton U, 2003), page 41.
The first entry is dated May 6, 1862, when the regiment was in the vicinity of Warrenton VA. There is no further detail on the version of base ball that was played.
1862.17 Ballplaying Frequently Played at Salisbury Prison in North Carolina
Beginning in 1862, prisoners' diary accounts refer to a number of base ball games [by New York rules; Millen infers that games occurred "almost daily"] at Salisbury prison in NC. Charles Gray, a Union doctor who arrived at Salisbury in May 1862, reported ball playing "for those who like it and are able." RI soldier William Crossley in March 1863 described a "great game of baseball" between prisoners transferred from New Orleans and Tuscaloosa AL.
[A] In an unattributed and undated passage, Josephus Clarkson, a prisoner from Boston "recalled in his diary that one of the Union solders wandered over and picked up a pine branch that had dropped on the ground. Another soldier wrapped a stone in a couple of woolen socks and tied the bundle with a string. The soldiers started a baseball game of sorts, although there was much argument over whether to use Town Ball rules or play like New Yorkers. 'To put a man out by Town Ball rules you could plug him as he ran,' wrote Clarkson. 'Since many of the men were in a weakened condition, it was agreed to play the faster but less harsh New York rules, which intrigued our guards. The game of baseball had been played much in the South, but many of them [the guards] had never seen the sport devised by Mr. Cartwright. Eventually they found proper bats for us to play with and we fashioned a ball that was soft and a great bounders.'" According to Clarkson, a pitcher from Texas was banished from playing in a guards/captives game after "badly laming" several prisoners. "By and large," he said, "baseball was quite a popular pastime of troops on both sides, as a means of relaxing before and after battles."
[B] Otto Boetticher, a commercial artist before the war, was imprisoned at Salisbury for part of 1862 and drew a picture of a ball game in progress at the prison that was published in color in 1863. A fine reproduction appears in Ward and Burns.
[C] Adolphus Magnum, A visiting Confederate chaplain, noted in 1862 that "a number of the younger and less dignified [Union officers] ran like schoolboys to the playing ground and were soon joining In high glee in a game of ball."
[D] An extended account of ballplaying at Salisbury, along with the Boetticher drawing, are found in From Pastime to Passion. It draws heavily on Jim Sumner, "Baseball at Salisbury Prison Camp," Baseball History (Meckler, Westport CT, 1989). Similar but unattributed coverage is found in Kirsch, Baseball in Blue and Gray (Princeton U, 2003), pp 43-45. PBall file: CW21.
[A] Wells Twombley, 200 Years of Sport in America (McGraw-Hill, 1976), page 71.
[B] Ward and Burns, Baseball Illustrated, at pages 10-11.
[D] Patricia Millen, From Pastime to Passion: Baseball and the Civil War (Heritage Books, 2001), pp.27-31.
[E] Patricia Millen, "The POW Game-- Captive Union Soldiers Play a Baseball Game at Salisbury, NC", in Inventing Baseball: The 100 Greatest Games of the 19th Century (SABR, 2013), pp. 36-38
It would be desirable to locate and inspect the Josephus Clarkson diary used in Twombley [A, above.]. Clarkson, described as a ship's chandler before the war, does not yield to Google or Genealogy bank as of 6/6/2009 or 4/3/2013. John Thorn's repeated searches have also come up empty. Particularly questionable is Clarkson's very early identification of Cartwright as an originator of the NY game.
1862.19 The 39th Massachusetts Plays Ball
The regimental history of the 39th MA has two passing references to ballplaying. On Thanksgiving Day of 1862, "There was a release from the greater part of camp duties and the time thus secured was devoted to baseball, football and other diversions so easily devised by the American youth" [p. 50]. The regimental camp was in southern MD, within 15 miles of Washington. April 2, 1863 "was the regular New England Fast Day, and a holiday was proclaimed by the Colonel . . . . [T]here was no failure in taking part in the races, sparring-matches, and various games, of at least witnessing them. The baseball game was between the men of Sleeper's Battery and those selected from the 39th with the honors remaining with the Infantry, though the cannoneers were supposed to be particularly skillful in the throwing of balls." [page 64]. The regiment was now in Poolesville MD, about 30 miles NW of Washington.
Alfred S. Roe, The Thirty-Ninth Regiment. Massachusetts Volunteers 1862-1865 (Regimental Veteran Association, Worcester, 1914). Accessed 6/3/09 on Google Books via "'thirty-ninth' roe" search. PBall file: CW-26.
The regiment was drawn from the general Boston area.
1862.20 Wisconsin Man's Diary Included a Dozen References to Ballplaying
Private Jenkin Jones sprinkled 12 references to ballplaying in his Civil War Diary. They range from December 1862 to February 1865. Most are very brief notes, like the "played ball in the afternoon" he recorded in Memphis in February 1863 [page 34]. The more revealing entries:
· Oxford, 12/62: "The delightful weather succeeded in enticing most of the boys form their well-worn decks and cribbage boards, bringing them out in ball playing, pitching quoits,etc. Tallied for an interesting game of base ball" [pp 19/20]
· Huntsville, 3/64: "Games daily in camp, ball, etc." [p. 184]
· Huntsville, 3/64: "Played ball all of the afternoon" [p.193]
· Fort Hall, 4/64: "[Col. Raum] examined our quarters and fortifications, after which he and the other officers turned in that had a game of wicket ball." [p.203]
· Etowah Bridge, 9/64: "a championship game of base-ball was played on the flat between the non-veterans and the veterans. The non-veterans came off victorious by 11 points in 61." [p. 251]
· Chattanooga, 2/65: "The 6th Badger boys have been playing ball with our neighbors, Buckeyes, this afternoon. We beat them three games of four.
Jenkin Lloyd Jones, An Artilleryman's Diary (Wisconsin History Commission, 1914). Accessed on Google Books 6/3/09 via "'wisconsin history commission' 'No. 8'" search. PBall file: CW-28.
Jones was from Spring Green, WI, which is about 30 miles west of Madison and 110 miles west of Milwaukee WI. Jones later became a leading Unitarian minister and a pacifist.
1862.21 Michigan Colonel Plays Ball in Tennessee, Still Rebuffs Rebs
The 12th Michigan Regiment had the task in December 1862 of guarding a supply railroad in Tennessee. On December 24, a detachment under Col. Wm. Graves was surrounded by a large rebel force that approached under white flag, demanding surrender. Graves' account: "The officer asked, 'Who is in command?' I answered, 'I am;' whereupon he surveyed me from head to foot (I had been playing ball that morning, pants in boots, having a jacket without straps) . . . ." Graves refused, a two-hour fight ensued, and the rebels retreated.
J. Robertson, compiler, Michigan in the War (W. S. George, Lansing MI, 1882), page 327. Accessed 6/4/09 on Google Books via ""michigan in the war" search. PBall file: CW-29.
The regiment seems to have been drawn from the vicinity of Niles, MI, which is 10 miles north of South Bend IN and 60 miles east of Chicago.. The 1862 engagement occurred at Middleburg TN, which is at about the midpoint between Nashville and Memphis.
1862.22 Crowd of 40,000 Said to Watch Christmas Day Game on SC Coast
"In Hilton Head, South Carolina, on Christmas Day in 1862, recalled Colonel A. G. Mills in 1923, his regiment, the 165th New York Infantry, Second Duryea's Zouaves, [engaged a?] picked nine from the other New York regiments in that vicinity.' Supposedly, the game was cheered on by a congregation of 40,000!" Mills eventually served as President of the National League and chair of the Mills Commission on the origins of baseball.
Patricia Millen, From Pastime to Passion: Baseball and the Civil War (Heritage Books, 2001), pp 21-22. Millen cites A. G. Mills, "The Evening World's Baseball Panorama." Mills Papers, Giamatti Center, Baseball HOF. The account also appears in A. Spalding, Americas' National Game (American Sports Publishing, 1911), pp 95.96. PBall file -- CW-30
Is this crowd estimate reasonable? Are other contemporary or reflective accounts available?
1862.24 Ball Game Photographed at Fort Pulaski, Georgia
A ball game appears in the background of photographs of the 48th New York at Fort Pulaski. The Fort, near the Georgia coast, had been taken by the North in July 1862. The National Park Services dates its image to 1862.</div>
1862.26 MA Regiment Plays Daily Intramural Games in Spring Months
1862.27 Southern Newspaper Urges: “More Manly Sports Like Cricket and Base Ball, Less Cardplay”
1862.29 Rebel Prisoners Seen Playing Ball in WI Prison Camp
1862.30 Game Suspended When BIG Fight Breaks Out
1862.31 Officer’s Wife Reports on an Evening at Camp with 16th NY Regiment
1862.34 51st Pennsylvania Plays Ball 1862-1864 in VA, KY, MD, Sometimes Daily.
1862.35 Massachusetts Officers Play Ball in May, on July 4
1862.36 CT Boys Play Ball on March to Fredericksburg
1862.37 Thanksgiving and Foot-ball . . . and Base-Ball
<p>After Appomattox, Lynch wrote: June 5th: . . . Thank God the cruel war is over. Playing ball, pitching quoits, helping the farmers, is the way we pass the time while waiting for orders to be mustered out. We have many friends in this town and vicinity.” These are the only references in the diary to ballplaying. In June Lynch was stationed in Martinsburg WV, about 30 miles west of Frederick MD and 75 miles northwest of Washington.</p><p>Charles H. Lynch, The Civil War Diary 1862-1865 (private printing, 1915), page 11, page 154. Accessed on Google books 6/2/09 via “charles h. lynch” search. Lynch, and presumably much of the regiment, was from the Norwich CT area. Lead provided by Jeff Kittel, 5/12/09.</p>
1862.39 Vermonters Play Manly Sport of Football, (and Base Ball) in Virginia
1862.44 Ohio Soldier Sees “Most of Our Company “ Playing Pre-battle Bat Ball
1862.47 Hawthorne Sees Ballplaying at Washington-area Camp
1862.48 Pork, Hard-Tack, Beans, and Baseball in the 5th Mass Artillery
1862.49 Photo Caption Sings of “Marvelous New Game,” Doesn’t Deliver
1862.50 Texas Ranger Plugs Waaay Too Hard
1862.51 4th NY and 13th NY Play Base Ball in VA
1862.52 Zouave Pitcher Baffles Batters With “Weak, Puzzling” Delivery
1862.53 Southern Brigade’s Play Base . . . Somewhere
1862c.54 Confederate soldiers in need of base ball and cricket bats
1862.57 Games Between NY and MA Regiments Punctuated by Artillery
1862.58 2nd Mass Troops Beat Wisconsin Regiment, 75 to 7
1862.60 Confederate POWs play baseball in New York City
<p>"A Confederate Yankee: The Journal of Edward William Drummond,a Confederate Soldier from Maine" (Drummond and Roger S. Durham), p. 51.</p> <p>Drummond, along with his Savannah "Chatham Artillery" unit, were captured at Fort Pulaski, outside Savanna, and taken to Governors Island POW camp in New York harbor. The next month he and his comrades play baseball almost daily. </p><p>Drummond was a Maine-born bookkeeper in Savannah at the start of the war. This entry suggests that his fellow townsmen were perfectly familiar with the game of base ball.</p>
1862.61 Confederate POWs in Indianapolis play base ball
1863.1 Ballplaying Peaks in the Civil War Camps
<p>[B] "Ballplaying in the Civil War Camps increased rapidly during the War, reaching a peak of 82 known games in April 1863 -- while the troops still remained in their winter camps. Base ball was by a large margin the game of choice among soldiers, but wicket, cricket, and the Massachusetts game were occasionally played. Play was much more common in the winter camps than near the battle fronts."</p> <p>[C] Note: In August 2013 Civil War scholar Bruce Allardice added this context to the recollected Army-wide "championship game":</p> <p>"The pitcher for the winning team was Lt. James Alexander Linen (1840-1918) of the 26th NJ, formerly of the Newark Eureka BBC. Linen later headed the bank, hence the mention in the book. In 1865 Linen organized the Wyoming BBC of Scranton, which changed its name to the Scranton BBC the next year. The 26th NJ was a Newark outfit, and a contemporary Newark newspaper says that many members of the prewar Eurekas and Adriatics of that town had joined the 26th. The 26th was in the Sixth Army Corps, Army of the Potomac, stationed at/near White Oak Church near Fredericksburg, VA. April 1863, the army was in camp. The book says Linen played against Charlie Walker a former catcher of the Newark Adriatics who was now catcher for the "Third Corps" club.</p> <p>"With all that being said, in my opinion the clubs that played this game weren't 'corps' clubs, but rather regimental and/or brigade clubs that by their play against other regiments/brigades claimed the Third and Sixth Corps championships.</p><p>"Steinke's "Scranton", page 44, has a line drawing and long article on Linen which mentions this game. See also the "New York Clipper" website, which has a photo of Linen."</p>
<p>As described in Patricia Millen, On the Battlefield, the New York Game Takes Hold, 1861-1865, Base Ball Journal, Volume 5, number 1 (Special Issue on Origins), pages 149-152.</p> <p>[B] Larry McCray, Ballplaying in Civil War Camps.</p> <p>[C] Bruce Allardice, email to Protoball of August, 2013.</p> <p>[D] (((add Steinke ref and Clipper url here?)))</p> <p> </p><p> </p>
1863.3 Diarist Records 12 References to Ball-Playing, 1863-1864
1863.4 MA Regiment Organizes a Baseball Club
1863.5 NJ Regiment Plays Ball on the Rappahannock in VA
1863.6 NY Private Plays a Lot of Ball Over Seven Weeks
1863.7 PA Unit Tries Cricket and Base-ball
1863.8 Wisconsin Soldier Reportedly “Died While Playing Wicket”
1863.9 In Coastal SC: Union Men Played Ball “In Almost Every Camp”
1863.10 5th Massachusetts Artillery Plays Base Ball, 1863-1864
1863.11 23-Year-Old Iowa Cavalryman Played Ball, Probably in SW Missouri
1863.12 Line Officers of 17th Maine Play 9 Innings for an Oyster Dinner
1863.13 Diarist in 8th Minnesota Mentions Ballplaying 4 Times – Maybe 5 Times
1863.14 Sergeant from 15th MA Plays Round Ball with 34th NY
1863.15 Soldier Under General Rosecrans Sees Ballplaying in Tennessee
1863.16 Vermonters Play Ball in Virginia
1863.17 In 19th MA Camp, “Base Ball Fever Broke Out” in 1863
1863.18 Base Ball [and Wicket] Played by the 10th Massachusetts
<p>“Considering the momentous interests at stake and the dread record that was to be written for May, 1864, it seems not a little strange that the beautiful month was ushered in just as April went out, with baseball. While a game of ball and shell of terrible import was pending, these men of war, after all only boys of a larger growth, happily ignorant of the future, were hilariously applauding the lucky hits and the swift running of bases clear up to the day before the movement across the Rapidan. It was on [May] 3rd that Company I played Company G and won the game by twelve tallies, and with that day came orders to march in the morning at 4.00 a.m.” [p. 253].</p> <p>The wicket games also occurred at Brandy Station in April 1864;“With the advance of the season came all the indications of quickening life, and athletics became exceedingly prevalent, and one item among many was a game of wicket on [April] 13th, between a picked team in the 37th [MA] and one drawn from the Tenth, resulting in a victory of two tallies for our boys” [p.251]. In a rematch 10 days later, the 10th won again [p.252].</p><p>Alfred S. Roe, The Tenth Regiment Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry 1861-1864 (Tenth Regiment Veteran Association, Springfield MA, 1909). Accessed 6/9/09 on Google Books via “’tenth regiment’ roe” search. The regiment was drawn from Springfield and Western Massachusetts, where wicket was evidently a not uncommon prewar pastime. Cf CW-57, which also reflects the 10th MA.</p>
1863.19 Eventual National League Prexy Sticks with Cricket in War Camp
<p>Nicholas Young was born in Amsterdam NY in 1840, and thus was playing the named games in the 1850s. He was a member of the 32nd NY Infantry, which was at Falmouth VA in spring 1863. He led the NL from 1881 to 1903.</p> <p> </p> <p> </p><p> </p>
<p>Summarized in George Kirsch, Baseball in Blue and Gray (Princeton U, 2003), page 37. </p><p>Zoss and Bowman’s Diamonds in the Rough says that the 32nd had a cricket team and that Young played on it [p. 81]. </p>
1863.20 Soldier: “Our Camp is Alive with Ball-Players”
1863.21 Pennsylvania Soldier Notes Ballplaying in the 12th PA
1863.22 Chaplain Reports Many Games of Ball in 16th New York
1863.23 Sgt. in the 6th Maine Reports “Huge Game of Ball” in VA
1863.24 Massachusetts Private Notes Eight April Games of Ball [One was Wicket]
<p>In 1864 Willsey reports on a match game with the 2nd RI on April 26 and another against the 1st NJ on April 30. “We have never been beat, he says. On April 23, he records a “game of ball” that was wicket. “The dust has been flying in clouds all day, yet it did not prevent the game of Ball from being played. Our boys were opposed by the 37th Mass at a game of wicket making 337 tallies, while the 37th only made 200.” In 1864 the Regiment was in the vicinity of Brandy Station VA.</p><p>Jessica H. DeMay, ed., The Civil War Diary of Berea M. Willsey (Heritage Books, 1995), pp 84-86, 142-143. Full text unavailable online 6/10/09. Provided by Michael Aubrecht, May 15, 2009. The 10th MA was from Western Massachusetts, and Willsey may have been from the North Adams area. Cf. CW-51, which also depicts the 10th MA.</p>
1863.25 Men in 59th NY Play Ball, Run, Pitch Quarters, Etc
1863.26 19th MA bests 7th MI, Wins Stake of $110
1863.27 Weary Soldier Plays Ball a Little While
1863.28 Box Score Shows D Company Over H Company, 40-15
1863.29 From Union Camp, Rebs are “Daily Seen Playing Ball”
1863.30 Herald Reports [Presumably] NY/NJ Match in Army of the Potomac
1863.31 New Jersey Eighth Trims New Jersey Fifth, 50 to15
1863.32 In Virginia: Select Nine 29, 2nd NJ Brigade 15
1863.33 Twenty Sixth NJ 20, Second NY 12, in Virginia
1863.34 First New Jersey Brigade Plays Ball in 1863 and 1864.
<p>Spring 1864: “The men played baseball and football as the weather moderated. ‘The exercise will do more toward restoring health in the regiment than all the blue pills in the medical department,’ noted Lucien Voorhees. Some men secured boxing gloves, and daily fights were all the rage.</p><p>Bradley M. Gottfried, Kearney’s Own: The History of the First New Jersey Brigade During the Civil War (Rutgers U Press, 2005), pages 100 and 157. Gottfried does not document these observations, other than briefly noting [p. 107] the 1863 game between the 2nd and the 26th Regiments noted in file CW-66. In 1863 the Brigade wintered at White Oak Church near Falmouth VA. Accessed 6/14/09 on Google Books via “’kearny’s own’” search; available in limited preview format.</p>
1863.35 Correspondent Sees Playing Base Ball and Cricket As Common Pastimes
1863.36 Massachusetts Regiments Play NY Game Most, Mass Game Some
1863.37 Diarist at White Oak Church Camp in VA Plays Ball
1863.38 In 10th MA: Ballplaying Has “Become a Mania” in 1863 Camp, Wicket Also Played in 1864
1863.39 2nd NY Plays 9th NJ for $300.00
1863.40 Bettors Beware: NJ Soldiers Upset 2nd NY, 34-11: Daily Inter-regimental Play is Reported
1863.41 High-Stakes Matches Dot VA as Winter Camps Thaw Out
1863.42 Union Army Captain Sees Base Ball Good for Morale, and Health Too
<p>[B]Allison C. Barash, “Baseball in the Civil War, The National Pastime (January 2001), pp 17-18. Stafford VA is about 10 miles north of Fredericksburg and 65 miles north of Richmond.</p><p> </p>
1863.43 Floridian: “Game of Ball . . . Has Become a Great Amusement Here”
1863.44 Florida Sergeant Notes Baseball Fever – Well, Town-Ball Fever, Actually
1863.45 10th Maine Played “Time-Honored Game of Base-ball”
1863.46 New York Soldier Seeks Baserunning Rule from Clipper
1863.47 Ballplaying Watched by “Great Crowds of Soldiers,” and Some Play at Verge of Battle
1863.48 11th MA and 26th PA Play by Mass Game Rules for $50 a Side.
1863.49 Union Men Celebrate Thanksgiving with “Grand Game of Townball”
1863.50 Rebel Soldier Plays “Fine Game of Town Ball” in Georgia
1863.51 Base-Ball and Foot-Ball Were Favorite Amusements”
1863.52 At Winter Camp, Pleasant Days Saw Base-Ball or Wicket
1863.53 In Virginia: Tenth Mass 15, First New Jersey 13
1863.54 In VA Camp, “Base Ball was the Popular Amusement”
1863.55 First and Second Nines of 9th NY Prevail an Yorktown VA
1863.57 Georgia Corporal Plays Town Ball
1863.58 Ballplaying on the Lines at the Siege of Vicksburg
<p>“’We were throwing and catching the ball belonging to our company ne day,’ he relates, ‘when firing commenced afresh and the men dived into their holes. There was a big fellow named Holleran who, after we got to cover, wanted to go over and whip the ‘Johnny Reb’ who hd stolen our ball. The next morning during a lull in the firing, that ‘Reb’ yelled to us and in a minute the baseball came flying over the works, so we played a game on our next relief.’”</p><p>The siege of Vicksburg MS occurred from late May to July 4 1863. Many Iowa regiments participated.</p>
1863.59 General Supports Ballplaying by RI Unit
1863.60 New Bats and Balls Arrive, But 91st NY Loses Again
1863.61 Drawing Shows 1st NJ Artillery Playing Ball Game on a Diamond
1863.65 Ravaged By War
1863.66 They didn't know the rules!
1863.67 Excelsior Club Expels Turncoat Surgeon
1863.68 24th Wisconsin Plays Baseball
transpired in the Twenty-fourth since I wrote you last, except the
regular routine of camp life. The Regiment went to Selma, a little town
about five miles from camp, on a light trip. They parted on the 4th and
came back the 13th. The Brigade was thrown out as a picket. The boys
amused themselves while there in making briar-root pipes, gobbling up
sheep, calves, porkers, etc., and playing base ball, which afforded
them a good deal of fun. "</p>
1863.69 19th IL vs. 69th Ohio
1864.1 Southern Soldier Notes Repeated Ballplaying, Including Game of Cat
1864.2 Minnesotan’s Diary Shows Ballplaying on Ten Days Over Ten Weeks
1864.3 New Yorker Plays January Games of Ball
1864.4 10th Vermont Lieutenant Describes Ballplaying in Northern Virginia
1864.5 Army Base-ball, the Light of Day, and the Southern Soul
1864.6 Officers in 30th MA Play Base Ball
1864.7 Vermont Regiment Plays in Louisiana
1864.8 Wisconsin Soldier Plays Wicket Ball
1864.9 Chicago Marine Plays Base Ball in Louisiana
1864.10 PA Soldier Records Ballplaying in NC
1864.11 NJ Regiment Takes on Massachusetts and New York Units
1864.12 In Virginia, Two PA Regiments Play “Great Base Ball Game”
1864.13 NY Artilleryman Notes Two Inter-regimental Games
1864.14 Players “Lamed Badly” at Ballplaying
1864.15 Maine Soldier Lame from Ballplaying
1864.16 14th Louisiana Plays Ball in Virginia
1864.17 Florida Regiments Mix it Up in Town Ball
1864.18 RI Soldier Cites “:A Game in Our Regt, Nine Innings a Side”
1864.19 Waiting for Sherman, and Playing, in Georgia
1864.20 150th Pennsylvania Pursues “The Pleasant Game of Cricket”
1864.21 Match at Coney Island Proposed for Two Returned Regiments
1864.22 Union POWs in SC Given “Plot of Ground Where They Could Play Ball”
1864.23 Southern Officers Play Ball in Ohio Prison
1864.24 Ohioan in Sherman’s Force Plays Near Atlanta
1864.25 The Hothead Union Captain and the Foul Ball
1864.26 Union Prisoners in Texas Given a Ball Ground – For a While
1864.27 NH Officers and Men Together on the Ball Field
1864.28 NJ Artillerymen Play Ball in Virginia
1864.29 Two NY Regiments Play “Grand Game on the Parade Ground” in VA
1864.30 Union Prisoner Reported Shot While Playing Ball in Texas Pen
1864.31 Trophy Ball Kept in 22nd MA Regiment
1864.32 NY Horseman Gets Banged Up Playing Ball
1864.33 New Yorkers Lose Their Only Ball, and Their Centerfielder
1864.34 Tenth MA Plays Inter-regimental Games of Base Ball and Wicket in VA
1864.35 Government Promotes Base Ball
1864.38 Base Ball On The Rebound
<p>[B] "THE OPENING PLAY OF THE SEASON. NOT since 1861 has there been a season that has opened more auspiciously for the welfare of the game than the present one; and the prospects are that we shall have one of the most enjoyable series of matches of any year since base ball was inaugurated as our national game of ball."</p> <p>[C] 'THE JUNIOR FRATERNITY.-- Not a week passes that some new junior organization does not spring into existence..."</p> <p>[D] "MATCHES FOR SEPTEMBER.-- ...We are glad to note the fact that not even in the palmy days of 1860, when every vacant lot or available space for playing ball was occupied by junior clubs, have these young players been so numerous as this season."</p><p>[E] "THE SEASON OF 1864.-- Taking into consideration the existence of civil war in the country, the ball-playing season of 1864 has been the most successful and advantageous to the interests of our national game known in the annals of baseball...We are glad also to record the fact, that among the marked features of the past season none has been more promising for the permanence of the game than the great increase of junior players and clubs."</p>
<p>[B] New York Clipper, May 14, 1864</p> <p>[C] Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Aug. 22, 1864</p> <p>[D] Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Sep. 9, 1864</p><p>[E] New York Sunday Mercury, Nov. 13, 1864</p>
1864.39 Helping the Sanitary Commission
1864c.52 Former Mass-Game Champs Form Winning Wartime Team
<p>"A much more pleasing picture is the recreation enjoyed by the boys of the 33rd [MA] Regiment. There were thirteen Sharon boys in the regiment and most of them had been members of the Sharon Massapoags, the state baseball champions of 1857. . . .</p><p>"They formed a nine of their own and soon defeated every team in the regiment. The New York boys of the 136th regiment next fell before them. At Atlanta their contest with a nine from the whole Cumberland army was crowned with success. Though unfortunately, but quite naturally the victors became insufferably conceited."</p>
1864.53 General Hooker's Players "Pretty Badly Beat", 70-11
<p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"> </p> <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;">B:Nothing has been stirring for the last week except for ball playing and one brigade drill. We play ball about all the time now. We, or some of the officers, have received a challenge from Gen'l Hooker's staff and escort to play a match. Fourteen players have been selected to play against them, amongst whom is ELE< the letter writer>. Four of them are commissioned officers, the rest enlisted men. We have also had a challenge from the one hundred and thirty.sixth New York, bit I don't know if it will be played or not.</p> <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"> </p><p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;">C: Major Lawrence with a skillful nine selected from Hooker's body guard, challenged the [33rd MA] regiment to match them in a manly game of base ball, and his nine got worsted. The New York regiment threw down the glove with a like result. The champion Sharon [MA] boys knew a thing or two about base ball, which they had learned in contests with the laurelled Massapoags at home.
<p>B: Letter home by E. L. Edes, April 1864. For full letter, see Supplemental Text, below.</p> <p>C: A. B. Underwood, Thirty-Third Mass. Infantry Regiment, 1862 - 1865 (A. Williams and Co., Boston, 1881, page 199. Search string: <kershaw had a smart>. </p><p> </p>
<p>General Sherman's winter camp was outside Chattanooga, and his march into GA started in the beginning of May 1864.</p> <p> </p><p> </p>
1864.54 Daily Eagle Sees Base Ball Now Played Throughout US North (East of the Mississippi)
"Ball players are being made by the hundred in our army. The few members of clubs that happen to get into the different regiments that have emanated from the Metropolis have inoculated the whole service with a love of the game, and during last year, for the first time, we believe, base ball matches took place in every State in the Union-- or out of it, as the case may be-- this side of the Mississippi. Materials are now furnished to the various regiments that require them, and this by order of the Government, and this year, unless some very stirring work is done, games of ball will be played throughout the country, not only by civilians in the great cities, but by our soldiers in every camp, North, East, West, and South."</p>
1864.55 Soldiers on leave play ball in Chicago
1864c.56 Confederate Prisoners Play Ball in Chicago
<p>Copley, "A Sketch of the Battle of Franklin...." p. 172. He was taken prisoner in late 1864, thus the ballplaying he witnessed occurred in late 1864 or early 1865.</p> <p>There are mentions in other books of POWs playing base ball at Camp Douglas.</p><p>For example, the Chicago Tribune, March 25, 1862 reports that the Camp Douglas POWs played " a game of ball.... giving full play to the arms, legs and lungs."</p>
1864.57 Union Army Parolees Play Baseball in Camp
1865.2 Illinois Soldier Plays Wicket Near War’s End
1865.3 Bay Stater to Wife: “We had a gay old time playing ball . . . send me five dollars”
1865.4 On Last Day of Service, PA Soldiers Play Ball
1865.5 Minnesotans Play Ball in Near Selma Alabama.
1865.6 Detachment Forms BB Club in Trenton
1865.7 Awaiting Release, Soldier in DC Plays and Watches Base Ball
1865.14 Baseball For The Wounded
1865.17 Mass Game Survived the Civil War
1865.22 89th Illinois beats 49th Ohio
1865.27 First Organized Base Ball Game in NC?
1865.28 Union Guards at Elmira Prison Play Baseball with Confederate POWs
<p>The Chemung Union played against some Elmira POWs in 1865, according to James E. Hare, "Elmira," p. 75.</p> <p>Janowski, "The Elmira Prison Camp" p. 360 says that in 1864 "The teams of the different [Confederate] states used to play baseball for the edification of the guards," quoting a soldier who was in the 54th NY guarding the POWs.</p><p>Horrigan, "Elmira: Death Camp of the North" says that on 9-3-64 two guards regiments, the 54th and 56th NY Infantry, played baseball against each other outside the camp.</p>
1865.29 Ballplaying at Appomattox surrender?