Historic Pelham

Presenting the rich history of Pelham, NY in Westchester County: current historical research, descriptions of how to research Pelham history online and genealogy discussions of Pelham families.

Monday, November 20, 2017

More References to Baseball in 19th Century Pelham

In 1884, the Town of Pelham had no newspaper.  Thus, newspapers of surrounding communities included sections with news from "City Island and Pelham."

During the summer of that year, nearby newspapers were replete with descriptions of the exploits of Pelham baseball teams including the Country Club Giants, the Vails of City Island, the Beldens of City Island, and the Pelhamville baseball team, among others.  The exploits of such teams, of course, are part of the history and lore of Historic Pelham.

The Country Club of Pelham on Shore Road was in the midst of its first season in 1884.  It had a baseball team known as the "Country Club Giants."  The beginning of the first season of the Country Club Giants, however, does not seem to have been too successful.  According to a report published on August 8, 1884, the Country Club Giants recently had been defeated by the nearby Calumet Club.  The defeat seems to have been so humbling that the news report noted that the Country Club Giants thereafter had "been resting, but are looking forward to several matches in the autumn, in which they expect to be more victorious."

The following week, The Chronicle of Mount Vernon included numerous reports of local baseball in Pelham.  The paper reported that on August 16, 1884, the Vails of City Island would play the Pelhamville baseball team.  It also reported that the Vails recently had reorganized and had played a game against the Willet's Point baseball club on Saturday, August 9, 1884.  After three innings the game was called due to rain with the Vails leading 8 to 6.  The remainder of the game was scheduled to be finished the following Saturday, August 16.  The same day (Saturday, August 16, 1884), the Beldens of City Island were scheduled to play the New Rochelle baseball club. 

In short, the National Pastime was so popular in Pelham in 1884, that multiple games were held at times on the same day.  Indeed, the Town supported many baseball clubs at the time.

19th Century Baseball Game Like Those Played in Pelham.

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The excursion of the Merry Ten, to Roton Point by steamer Meyers and barge Geraldine, will take place next Wednesday.

Another of Mount Vernon's citizens, with his family, moved down this week to enjoy the cool, salt air, until September 1st.

Some of the principal streets of the town of Pelham are sadly in need of repairs.  One would hardly expect this to be the case with such an efficient Board of Commissioners, as the town of Pelham has a right to feel proud of. -- Pioneer.

Until the 20th inst. the assessment roll of the town of Pelham, will be open for inspection.  One noticeable feature of this assessment roll is the almost entire absence of assessments for personal property.  The real estate owners of the town have just grounds for complaint against the high rate of taxation.  If the personal property in the town, liable to taxation, were assessed and the taxes collected it would materially lighten the burden of the poor man with his little house and half or quarter acre of ground.

The Country Club, at Bartow, has been wonderfully successful and is constantly crowded with members and guests.  The membership of 250 is within four or five of being filled, and its future seems assured.  The bathing beach, the tennis courts and polo field connected with the club add greatly to its attractions and are well patronized.  Since its recent defeat by the Calumet Club nine, the baseball team of the club have been resting, but are looking forward to several matches in the autumn, in which they expect to be more victorious.  The large reading room in the club house has been found an especially agreeable feature and the restaurant has greatly improved and is now in good running order.  The experiment of allowing ladies the privileges of the club has proved very successful, and many of the wives, sisters, and cousins of the members have visited the club and enjoyed its hospitality. -- Pioneer."

Source:  CITY ISLAND AND PELHAM, The Chronicle [Mount Vernon, NY], Aug. 8, 1884, Vol. XV, No. 777, p. 3, col. 4.


The Vails will handle the ash with a Pelhamville nine a week from to-morrow.

Some extensive repairs and alterations are in progress at the Pelham Priory.

Police Justice, C. E. Kene, of New Rochelle, is stopping at the Bay View Hotel.

The Belden baseball club will play a match game with the New Rochelles, tomorrow.

About 350 friends of the Merry Ten accompanied them on their excursion last Wednesday to Roton Point.

Mr. Wm. Belden's residence is ready for occupancy after having undergone extensive alterations.  He will move in, in a few days.

Last Thursday, Mr. George H. Cameron sold the propellor Joshua Leviness, for $1,400.  The vessel was bought in by Mr. A. Leviness.

The Rev. Mr. Pray, of the M.E. Church is absent from his charge on a six weeks' vacation.  His place is filled every Sunday by clergymen from abroad.

We think it unnecessary to publish the communication from R. B.  As he states the facts they are substantially the same as published in the Chronicle of August 1st, the result being precisely the same.

It begins to look as though the dull season at the ship yards was to be brought to a close.  The Sandy Hook light ship, No. 16, is hauled out at Carll's for extensive repairs, and is also to have an automatic whistle put in.  The lighter jobbing at the yard is picking up.

The steamer Joshua Leviness, is now on the ways for a general overhauling.  When launched she will be taken to New York and offered for sale, but if a purchaser cannot be obtained, she will be put in commission as a freight boat.

The old Vail baseball nine have reorganized.  They went to Willet's Point last Saturday to play a game with the club of that place, but after three innings, game was called on account of the rain, the score standing 8 to 6 in favor of the Vails.  The game will be finished to-morrow.

The Country Club engage in practice games of polo every Friday and Monday afternoon.  They also enjoy a game of base ball occasionally.  The club and their grounds are becoming very popular although this is their first season.  It is proposed to lay out a race course on their grounds so as to have racing there this fall.  The work of preparing the course is progressing finely, and will be ready for use by September 1st.

It is an offense against the health code of Pelham for dogs to run at large, on City Island, unmuzzled.  Well the dogs, like the more intelligent two legged animals, their owners, violate the law, but the dogs are not arrested, they are allowed to go scott free and their owners, poor innocent creatures, are arrested, hauled up before Justice Martin, or some other justince and fined five dollars, unless the dog is able to show it unbuckled the strap and took the muzzle off, in order to get a better hold on a bone or somebody's legs."

Source:  CITY ISLAND AND PELHAM, The Chronicle [Mount Vernon, NY], Aug. 15, 1884, Vol. XV, No. 778, p. 3, col. 3.  

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I have written nearly fifty articles regarding the history of baseball in Pelham and early baseball games played in the Town of Pelham.  Below is a listing, with links, of previous postings on the topic of early baseball in Pelham.

Tue., Aug. 01, 2017:  More on 19th Century Baseball in the Town of Pelham.

Wed., Jul. 12, 2017:  The Nonpareils Base Ball Association of City Island During the 1860s.

Wed., Apr. 19, 2017:  Pelham Manor Club Defeated Gramatan Country Club in Baseball Game in August, 1902.

Mon., Feb. 13, 2017:  Important Information About Early Baseball in Pelham Including a Game Against the Monitors of Brooklyn.

Wed., Jan. 11, 2017:  Baseball Star Paddy Smith of Pelham.

Fri., Sep. 30, 2016:  More on 19th Century Baseball in the Town of Pelham.

Thu., Jul. 21, 2016:  "Base Ball" Match Played at Arcularius Hotel at Pelham Bridge in 1875.

Thu., Feb. 18, 2016:  More on the Storied History of 19th Century Baseball in Pelham.  

Tue., Dec. 15, 2015:  The 1894 Baseball Season in Pelham, New York.

Tue., Sep. 22, 2015:  Two Newly-Discovered 19th Century Accounts of Baseball Played in Pelham.

Thu., Jun. 18, 2015:  More Early References to 19th Century and Early 20th Century Baseball in Pelham.

Fri., Dec. 11, 2009:  Earliest Reference Yet to Baseball Played in Pelham.  

Thu., Dec. 10, 2009:  More 19th Century Baseball and Firefighting References

Wed., Dec. 9, 2009:  City Island Shamrocks Base Ball Club Changed its Name to the Minnefords in 1888.

Wed., Nov. 25, 2009:  Even More Early References to Baseball Played in Pelham.

Tue., Nov. 24, 2009:  Yet Another Reference to Early Baseball in Pelham.

Mon., Nov. 23, 2009:  Additional Brief Accounts of Baseball Played in Pelham in the 19th Century.

Fri., Nov. 20, 2009:  More Accounts of Early Baseball Played in Pelham.

Fri., Nov. 13, 2009:  1894 Account of Developments in Pelham Including a Reference to a Baseball Game Played that Year.

Thu., Nov. 12, 2009:  More Early References to Baseball Played in Pelham.

Wed., Sep. 30, 2009:   Score of June 1, 1887 Baseball Game Between the Country Club and The Knickerbocker Club.

Fri., Mar. 20, 2009:   Another Reference to 19th Century Baseball in Pelham.

Tue., Mar. 4, 2008:   Another Brief Reference to 19th Century Baseball in Pelham.

Mon., Nov. 26, 2007:  Box Score of a Baseball Game Played on Travers Island in Pelham Manor in July 1896.

Wed., Nov. 21, 2007:  Baseball on Travers Island During the Summer of 1897.

Fri., Jul. 20, 2007:  Account of Early Baseball in Pelham: Pelham vs. the New York Athletic Club on Travers Island in 1897.

Fri., Nov. 10, 2006: The Location of Another Early Baseball Field in Pelham.

Mon., Oct. 9, 2006:   Reminiscences of Val Miller Shed Light on Late 19th Century Baseball in Pelham and the Early Development of the Village of North Pelham.

Thu., Mar. 23, 2006:  Baseball Fields Opened on the Grounds of the Westchester Country Club in Pelham on April 4, 1884.  

Tue., Jan. 31, 2006:  Another Account of Baseball Played in Pelham in the 1880s Is Uncovered

Thu., Oct. 6, 2005:   Does This Photograph Show Members of the "Pelham Manor Junior Base Ball Team"?

Thu., Sep. 15, 2005:  Newspaper Item Published in 1942 Sheds Light on Baseball in 19th Century Pelham.  

Thu., Feb. 10, 2005:  New Discoveries Regarding Baseball in 19th Century Pelham

Bell, Blake A., Baseball in Late 19th Century Pelham, The Pelham Weekly, Vol. XIII, No. 17, Apr. 23, 2004, p. 8, col. 2.

Archive of the Historic Pelham Web Site.

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