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Brown U Student Reports "Play at Ball"

Salience Noteworthy
Tags College
Location New England
City/State/Country: Providence, RI, United States
Age of Players Adult

Brown College (Providence, RI) student Williams Latham notes in his diary:

On March 22: "We had a great play at ball today noon."

On April 9: "We this morning . . . have been playing ball, But I have never received so much pleasure from it here as I have in Bridgewater. They do not have more than 6 or 7 on a side, so that a great deal of time is spent in running after the ball, neither do they throw so fair ball, They are afraid the fellow in the middle will hit it with his bat-stick."



"The Diary of Williams Latham, 1823 - 1827," quoted in W. C. Bronson, The History of Brown University 1764 - 1914 (Providence, Brown University, 1914), p. 245. Per Henderson, Bat, Ball, and Bishop (Rockport Press, 1947), p.147, ref # 101.  See also Thomas L. Altherr, “A Place Leavel Enough to Play Ball: Baseball and Baseball-Type Games in the Colonial Era, Revolutionary War, and Early American Republic.." Nine, Volume 8, number 2 (2000), p. 15-49.  Reprinted in David Block, Baseball before We Knew It – see page 240.


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"The fellow in the middle?"  Does this suggest the lack of foul ground?

What/where is Bridgewater?  Was Bridgewater MA Latham's home town, maybe?

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