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Prominent Patriot Regrets Wasting Time Playing Cat (and Fives)

Salience Noteworthy
Tags Famous
City/State/Country: Philadelphia, PA, United States
Game Cat
Immediacy of Report Retrospective
Age of Players Youth
Notables Benjamin Rush

"I have been ashamed, likewise, in recollecting how much time I have wasted when a boy in playing cat and fives and steal-clothes, &etc . . . . that might have been been more profitably employed in getting my lessons or reading instructing books . . . ' 

(Letter from Philadelphia dated April 21, 1812 from Benjamin Rush, a signer of the Declaration of Independence, to the young son of a friend.) 


"Letter of Dr. Benjamin Rush," The Weekly Register (Baltimore), July 24, 1813.  Cited in Thomas L. Altherr, “There is Nothing Now Heard of, in Our Leisure Hours, But Ball, Ball, Ball,” The Cooperstown Symposium on Baseball and American Culture 1999 (McFarland, 2000), p. 191.

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