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1823c.9 Kentucky Abolitionist Recalls Playing Base-ball
"I had ever been devoted to athletic sports - riding on horseback . . . playing base-ball, bandy, foot-ball and all that - so I had confidence in my prowess."
-- Cassius Marcellus Clay, on his outdoor activities at St. Joseph College in Kentucky in about 1823.
Clay (b. 1810) attended Madison Seminary, St. Joseph's College, Bardstown, KY around 1823.
Cassius Marcellus Clay, The Life of Cassius Marcellus Clay; Memoirs, Writings and Speeches, Volume 1 (Brennan and Co., Cincinnati, 1886), page 35. Per Thomas L. Altherr, "Chucking the Old Apple: Recent Discoveries of Pre-1840 North American Ball Games," Base Ball, Volume 2, number 1 (Spring 2008), page 31.
Raised in Nelson Counrty
Clay's book, which seems to make no other reference to ball-playing, was accessed 11/15/2008 via a Google Books search for <life of cassius>.
1861.36 Confederate Soldier Reports “Several Kinds of Ball”
“The troops enjoyed a variety of sports, ‘some of which are harder than any work I ever saw,’ observed a Louisiana soldier at Columbus. Among them were footraces, several kinds of ball, wrestling, climbing trees and a herculean game in which a cannonball was hurled into one of nine holes in the ground.”
Larry J. Daniel, Soldiering in the Army of the Tennessee: A Portrait of Life in a Confederate Army (U of North Carolina Press, 1991), page 90. Daniel evidently attributes this to the New Orleans Crescent, October 29, 1861. He does not give the location or regiment involved. Note: can we locate the article? There was a juvenile English game called None Holes.
This was Columbus, KY where several LA units were stationed.
1862.77 42nd Ohio plays ball in Louisville
The Daily Cleveland Herald, April 5, 1862 prints a letter from the 42nd Ohio, in Louisville, April 1: "...the boys are out upon the lawn, playing ball, rolling on the grounds, turning summersaults &c."
The Daily Cleveland Herald, April 5, 1862
1863.75 Ohio soldiers play at Lexington, KY
The Summit County Beacon, March 26, 1863 prints a letter from a soldier in the 104th Ohio, datelined Lexington, March 15th: "The 19th Battery Boys have enjoyed themselves hugely this past week, playing ball. The 104th has also participated in the game and take hold of it as gayly as they were wont to do upon the old school house green in days of yore."
The Summit County Beacon, March 26, 1863
1863.78 Base Ball relives the monotony
The Madison State Journal, June 4, 1863 prints a Wisconsin soldier's letter from Columbus, KY dated May 31, 1863: "There have been no guerrilla raids or threatened attacks to relieve the monotony of camp and garrison life: but the foot race and the game of base ball have been substituted..."
The Madison State Journal, June 4, 1863