1855c.10

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"New Game" of Wicket Played in HI

Salience Noteworthy
Tags Females, Pre-modern Rules
Location Hawaii
City/State/Country: Honolulu, HI, United States
Game Wicket
Immediacy of Report Retrospective
Age of Players Youth
Text

[A] "In 1855 the new game of wicket was introduced at Punahou [School] and for a few years was the leading athletic game on the campus. . . . [The] fiercely contested games drew many spectators from among the young ladies and aroused no common interest among the friends of the school."

[B] "One game they all enjoyed was wicket, often watched by small Mary Burbank. Aipuni, the Hawaiians called it, or rounders, perhaps because the bat had a large rounder end. It was a forerunner of baseball, but the broad, heavy bat was held close to the ground."

[3] Through further digging, John Thorn suggests the migration of wicket to Hawaii through the Hawaii-born missionary Henry Obookiah. At age 17, Obookiah traveled to New Haven and was educated in the area. He may well have been exposed to wicket there.  He died in 1818, but not before helping organize a ministry [Episcopalian?] in Hawaii that began in 1820.

See also John Thorn's 2016 recap in the supplementary text, below. 

 

Sources

[A] J. S. Emerson, "Personal Reminiscences of S. C. Armstrong," The Southern Workman Volume 36, number 6 (June 1907), pages 337-338. Accessed 2/12/10 via Google Books search ("punahou school" workman 1907). Punahou School, formerly Oahu College, is in Honolulu.

[B] Ethel M.Damon M. , Sanford Ballard Dole and His Hawaii [Pacific Books, Palo Alto, 1957], page 41. 

[C] John's source is the pamphlet Hawaiian Oddities, by Mike Jay [R. D. Seal, Seattle, ca 1960]. [Personal communication, 7/26/04.]

Comment

Damon added: "Aipuni, the Hawaiians called it, or rounders, perhaps because the bat had a larger rounder end.t was a a forerunner of baseball, but the broad, heavy bat was held close to thee ground."

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Submitted by John Thorn
Has Supplemental Text Yes



Comments


Bsallardice

350 days ago
Score 0
The Pacific Commercial Advertiser, March 29, 1860, announces the formation of a wicket club in Honolulu: "A wicket club has been organized among the young men of this city and students of Punahou College."

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Supplemental Text

From John Thorn's post on Our Game, 10/6/2016:

"One game they all enjoyed was wicket, often watched by small Mary Burbank. [[Aipuni]], the Hawaiians called it, or rounders, perhaps because the bat had a large rounder end. It was a forerunner of baseball, but the broad, heavy bat was held close to the ground." [Source: Ethel M. Damon. Sanford Ballard Dole and His Hawaii, Pacific Books, Palo Alto, 1957, page 41.] This quotation is a recollection within Chapter III of the book, covering the years 1855-66, and is given context by two earlier passages:

“In 1855, when the Doles moved to Koloa to live, Dr. Wood’s partner and manager was his brother-in-law, Judge Samuel Burbank, still another Maine man, a young lawyer who by good fortune had been bred a farmer. All of these young New Englanders were men of character and integrity which set a high level in the new community.” [p. 36]

“One of the little girls of this Koloa school, Mary Burbank, daughter of the plantation manager, still recalled it seventy-five years later, if people asked her about it. Across the road from the Smiths’ was the big adobe Hawaiian church, built in Father Gulick’s time; just above that was the large Hawaiian school taught by a Hawaiian teacher. Below it, on the site occupied by the present public school, was a thatch-roofed house with clapboard sides. Here the new Dole school opened, in a thicket of indigo bushes, with a clearing to the road in front where the boys played a bat-and-ball game called wicket. The schoolhouse was a simple one without a ceiling, all the rafters in the interior exposed where not covered by blackboards around the sides.” [pp. 38-39]

 

House in Puna, 1856

The Doles built their school in 1855 and enlarged it at a new location in 1857. So it might be best to place this reference to wicket play as 1855-57. 

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