Baseball During The Civil War
The other day I came across a book titled “From Pastime to Passion, Baseball and the Civil War” by Patricia Millan. In her book she states that some baseball was played between regiments during the war but a holiday feast, letter or package from home got priority over a baseball game.
You see baseball told us with a baseball commemorative postage stamp issued 6/12/39 that Abner Doubleday (1819-1893) founded baseball at Cooperstown in 1839. Research later told us this might not have been 100% correct.
Soldier’s diaries many times stated that troops played baseball between battles with some played at prisoner-of-war-camps. The Confederate Camp Salisbury, North Carolina records weren’t too good as the camp was burned when the war ended.
The soldiers from New York area played by the New York rules (Nickerbocher) as many different rules prevailed over the US. A few games were actually played between the North and South as Patricia Millen tells in her book. A game played at Alexandria, Louisiana by the 114th New York was interrupted by Rebel skirmishers when they shot the right fielder, captured the center fielder, and ran off with the only game ball.
I once heard a Lincoln historian tell that Abe Lincoln was playing baseball in a park in Springfield 1860 when he was told that he had received the nomination to run for president.
That’s the Way Other People Saw It.
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