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Strolling Past a Ballgame in Elysian Fields

Salience Noteworthy
Tags Ball in the Culture
Location Greater New York City
City/State/Country: Hoboken, NJ, United States
Game Base Ball
Age of Players Adult

George Thompson has uncovered a long account of a leisurely visit to Elysian Fields, one that encounters a ball game in progress.

A few excerpts: "We have passed so quickly from the city and its hubbub, that the charm of this delicious contrast is absolutely magical.

"What a motley crowd! Old and young, men women and children . . . . Well-dressed and badly dressed, and scarcely dressed at all - Germans, French, Italians, Americans, with here and there a mincing Londoner, his cockney gait and trim whiskers. This walk in Hoboken is one of the most absolutely democratic places in the world. . . . . Now we are on the smoothly graveled walk. . . . Now let us go round this sharp curve . . . then along the widened terrace path, until it loses itself in a green and spacious lawn . . . [t]his is the entrance to the far-famed Elysian Fields.

"The centre of the lawn has been marked out into a magnificent ball ground, and two parties of rollicking, joyous young men are engaged in that excellent and health-imparting sport, base ball. They are without hats, coats or waistcoats, and their well-knit forms, and elastic movements, as that bound after bounding ball, furnish gratifying evidence that there are still classes of young men among us as calculated to preserve the race from degenerating."


George G. Foster, Fifteen Minutes Around New York (1854). The piece was written in 1853.

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Submitted by George Thompson
Submission Note 19CBB posting, 3/12/2008


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