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"Base Ball" and "Bat and Ball" Seen as the Same Game

Salience Peripheral
City/State/Country: PA, United States
Game Base Ball, Bat-and-Ball
Immediacy of Report Contemporary
Age of Players Youth

An 1864 schoolbook lesson presents “Base-ball” and “Bat-and-Ball” as two names for the same game. 

After describing football, the authors describe “another game, which is called base ball, or bat and ball. [. . .]  The ball used in this game is much smaller and is driven through the air with a round piece of wood called a bat, with which the boy strikes the ball” (pp. 72-73)



George S. Hilliard and Loomis Joseph Campbell, The Second Reader for Primary Schools, (Philadelphia:  Eldredge and Brother, 1864), pp. 72-73.


Of special interest here is co-author George S. Hilliard, whose background may explain why he regarded base-ball and bat and ball as the same game.  Hilliard (1808 – 1879) was born in Machias on the coast of Maine, where the term “the bat and ball” was used to describe a specific baseball-like game (see B. Turner, “The Bat and Ball,” Base Ball (Spring 2011).  Starting in 1828, Hilliard was an instructor at the Round Hill School in Northampton, MA, where baseball-like games were part of the physical education curriculum (see, entry 1823.6; also see B. Turner, “Cogswell’s Bat,” Base Ball (Spring 2010)). 

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Submitted by Brian Turner
Submission Note Email of 9/1/2014


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