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David Pietrusza's
Capital Region Baseball Timeline
Part I: 1819-1899
1819 - Abner Doubleday born in Ballston Spa, son of publisher of Saratoga Courier.
(June 26)

1821 - Schenectady City Council bans "playing of Ball against  the Building or in the yard
fronting the Building called City Hall and belonging to this corporation . . . under penalty
of Fifty Cents for each and every offense and that the marshall be directed to attend to
the enforcement of this resolution." (May 26)

1840 - Future NL President Nicholas Young born in Fort Johnson (September 12).

1841 - Asa Brainard, pitcher for the 1869 Cincinnati Red Stockings (first fully
professional team), born in Albany.

1844 - Future major league player Bill Craver born in Troy (June).

1856 - Future major league outfielder Pete Hotaling born in Mohawk, NY (December
16).

1857 - Hall of Famer King Kelly born in Troy (December 31).

1858 - Bud Fowler, first black professional player born in Fort Plain, New York.

1858 - Future major league catcher Fatty Briody born in Lansingburgh (August 13).

1859 - First intercollegiate baseball game, July 1; Pittsfield; Amherst defeats Williams
College 73-32.

- Senior and junior members of the Albany Base Ball club play each other on "the island
opposite this city"—juniors win 40-36 in the 10th inning (June 18). On August 25 the
seniors triumph 67-53.

1860 - Victorys of Troy join the amateur National Association of Base Ball Players, one
of 62 clubs to do so

- "A base ball club has been formed in Saratoga with John H. Patrick as President."
(April 17)

- Juniors Club of Union College defeats "Mohawk Base Ball Club" of Schenectady 46-
28. (Saturday, June 16).

- Excelsiors of South Brooklyn play at Albany's Washington Parade Grounds (now
Washington Park)in baseball's first known road game on July 2. Excelsiors defeat the
Champion club of Albany 24-6 behind pitcher Jim Creighton. On July 3 at Weir's
Course Excelsiors defeat the Victorys 13-7. Excelsiors defeat the Mohawk Base Ball
Club of Schenectady at Scotia 37-33 (Sept. 14).

- Troy and Albany delegates attend the second convention of the National Association
of Base-Ball Players.

1861 - Victorys and the Priam club of Troy join to form the Union Baseball Club of
Rensselaer County.

1862 - Elms Base Ball Club forms in Pittsfield

1863 - Future major league outfielder Dick Johnston born in Kingston (April 6)

1864 - The Albany Evening Journal reports 16 baseball clubs in the city, including the
Star Club, the Rival Club, the Eckford Club, the Holyoke Club, the Knickerbocker
Club and the National Club.

c. 1865 - Second baseman Frank Grant, called "the greatest Negro baseball player of
the 19th century" born near Pittsfield

c. 1865 - Future New York Giants owner John T. Brush establishes commercial
enterprises in Troy and Albany.

1865 - The "Skating Park Base Ball Ground" opens in Albany with members from the
Knickerbocker, National and Eckford clubs playing the first game. The
Albany
Evening Journal
comments "the new ground will soon be one of the best in the state;
and the association intends to make ample accommodation for the ladies who shall
attend the matches. (June 6)

- Area baseball clubs include the Eckford, National, Eagle, Pioneer, Empire, Resolute,
Indianola, Hiawatha and Live Oak clubs of Albany, the Minnesota Club of Watervliet;
the Washington, Roanoke, Conqueror, Enterprise, Neptune, and Mohawk clubs of
Troy and the Union Club of Lansingburgh.

1866 - Union Baseball Club of Rensselaer County becomes Unions of Lansingburgh; Bill
Craver is catcher—later at center of Louisville gambling scandal.

- Unions gain nickname of Haymakers in August visit to Capitoline Grounds and Elysian
Field.

1867 - Nick Young helps organize Washington's Olympic Base Ball Club.

1868 - Ancient Baseball Club of Schenectady is organized. On September 8, they
engage the Actives of Wappinger's Falls "on the ball ground, just beyond Veeder's
mills."  "An admission of ten cents will be charged in order to defray expenses. Ladies
free."

- Future major league pitcher Frank Dwyer born in Lee, Ma. (March 25).

1868 - Charles Martin Conlon, one of baseball's greatest photographers, is born in
Albany (November).

1869 - Ancient Base Ball Club of Schenectady buys the "lot known as the 'poor pasture'
for baseball purposes. This lot is 600 feet square, beautifully located and overlooking the
finest scenery along the Mohawk River. Upon whose banks the lot is situated. The
fullest preparation will be made to make this a first class ball ground, and the public may
be expected to see some excellent playing this coming season . . . Another great
attraction will be added in the shape of a nicely laid out velocipede track around the
circumference of the grounds, distance one quarter mile." (May)

1869 - The Cincinnati Red Stockings, the first professional team, defeat the Troy
Haymakers 32-30 at Lansingburgh (June 7)

1869 - The Haymakers visit Cincinnati and walk off the field with the score tied 17-17 to
prevent Haymaker backer John J. Morrisey from losing a considerable; rumors spread
that Morrie had paid Red Stockings pitcher Asa Brainard to fix the game (August 26)

1870 - Future major league star shortstop and manager Bad Bill Dahlen born in Nelliston
(January 5)

- Future major league star shortstop George W. Davis born in Cohoes (August 23)

- The Troy Putnams are declared the nation's junior club champions

- Bill Craver, then with Chicago, is accused of violating his contract.

- At a meeting of the amateur National Association of Baseball Ball Players, a Mr.
Cantwell of Albany proposes "That this Association regard the custom of hiring men to
play the game of baseball as reprehensible and injurious to the best interests of the
game." The resolution is defeated but helps lead to the formation of the first professional
league.

1871 - Nick Young suggests the meeting that leads to the National Association, the first
major league. John W. Schofield of Troy opens the meeting (March 17) and is elected
secretary of the Association; Troy enters the league finish fifth with a 13-15 record.

- Troy's Lipman Pike is first Jewish major league player and manager; he is replaced as
manager after just four games by Bill Craver.

- Infielder Steve Bellan (Esteban Enrique Bellan) debuts for Troy; first Hispanic major
leaguer (May 9).

- Frank Grant moves with his family from Pittsfield to Williamstown.

1872 - Cy Seymour born in Albany (Dec. 9)—leads NL with .377 batting average and .
559 slugging average in 1905.

- Troy goes 15-10 in National Association; last season in circuit. Plays last game on July
23 at Springfield's Hampden Park. Had league's highest payroll at $14,100.

- At a meeting at Cleveland's Kennard House Nick Young is elected secretary of the
National Association

1873 - John T. Brush leaves the Capital Region for Indianapolis.

1874 - Future major league righthander "Happy Jack" Chesbro born in North Adams
(June 5).

1875 - Future major leaguer Moose Grimshaw born in St. Johnsville (November 30).

1876 - Bill Craver is reputedly savagely beaten by a gambler for doublecrossing him on a
fix.

- National League is formed. Nick Young elected secretary. He will remain in that job
until 1902 (March 17).

1877 - Veteran minor league outfielder John Duffy born at Albany - with Albany (1899-
1902, 1913-14) and Troy (1908-1912)(May 24).

- Smiling Mickey Welch begins pro career with Volunteers of Poughkeepsie.

-
Bill Craver expelled from National League for throwing games with Louisville.

- Albany and Capital City clubs of Albany join National Base Ball Association
(International Association). Capital City drops out on May 9; New park for Albany club
constructed on Lark Street for $4,000. Manager Cummings sabotaged team so he can
join Rochester Hop-Bitters.

1878 - Haymakers of Lansingburgh compete with 12 other teams in the New York State
Association. Entrance fee: $10.

- Troy joins National League; Albany attempts to join but is rejected in a nine-team
league and unwieldy scheduling. Albany is also rejected because it failed to have the
minimum of 75,000 population. (December 4). Infielder Tommy Burns and reputed
curve ball inventor Candy Cummings with Albany. Cummings: "In 1878 I pitched in
Albany, and it was at this time that my health gave out and I retired from the diamond."

1879 - Troy finishes eighth (19-56, .253, 35.5 games back) in the National League,
despite presence of future Hall of Famer Dan Brouthers. George Washington Bradley
leads NL with 40 losses.

- Future major league catcher Ed "Yaller" Phelps born in Albany (March 3).

- Infielder Tommy Burns with Albany (International Association). Signs with White
Stockings at season's end.

- Leaders club forms in Kingston, named after local newspaper.

1880 - Hall of Famer Smiling Mickey Welch and future NL umpire Honest John Kelly
with Troy.

-
Albany Daily Evening Times suggest "why not have each man numbered, and the
number put opposite his name on the scorecard!" (April 19)

- Albany (7-16) drops out of National Baseball Association (the former International
Association) (July).

- Troy (4th place, 41-42, .494, 25.5 games back)—features Hall of Famers Roger
Conner (.292), Smiling Mickey Welch (2.54 ERA 34-30), Tim Keefe (0.86, 6-6) and
Buck Ewing (.250); Teammate Bob "Death to Flying Things" Ferguson leads NL with
24 walks.

1881 - Future AL catcher Ira Thomas born in Ballston Spa (January 22).

- Future major league first baseman Claude Rossman born in Philmont, NY (June 17).

- Troy president A.L. Hotchiss moves club's home grounds to Center Island in Hudson
River.

- Johnny Evers born in South Troy to John Joseph Evers, Sr. and Helena Keating Evers
(July 21)

- Troy (39-45, .464, 17 games back) finishes fifth in NL.

- Union College defeated by Chicago White Stockings 9-5. "Cap" Anson bests local
resident Frank Mountain.

- Against Worcester at Albany's Riverside Park Troy first baseman Roger Connor hits
the first major league grand slam home run (September 10).

- Troy draws a major-league record low of 12 fans against the Chicago White
Stockings at Albany's Riverside Park (September 27).

1882 - Troy moves home field to Troy Base Ball Grounds which is actually in Watervliet.

- Troy (7th place; 35-48, .422, 19.5 games back)finishes 7th in NL. Roger Connor
leads NL with 18 triples.

- Troy and Worcester removed from the National League;
Spalding's Guide—"The
Troy and Worcester clubs . . . resigned their membership, and they were both elected
honorary members of the League." The two teams are replaced by the NY Giants and
Philadelphia Phillies (September 24).

- Troy plays its last major league game; winning at Worcester 10-7. Paid attendance: 25
(September 29).

- Ransom Moore, proprietor of the Schenectady Fair Grounds lays out "a fair base ball
diamond" on the site (July).

1884- At a meeting at New York's Fifth Avenue Hotel Nick Young is elected fourth
president of the National League (Nov. 19).

1886 - Kingston and Troy spend single season in 4-team Hudson River League, which
disbands at season's end.

1886 - Future NL infielder Ed McDonald born in Albany (October 28).

1888 - Mohawk Colored Giants' pitcher Frank Wickware born in Coffeyville, Kansas

- Future Washington outfielder Bill Cunningham born in Schenectady (June 9).

- Future ML outfielder Al Burch born in Albany (0ctober 7).

- Kingston native Dick Johnston leads the NL with 18 triples.

- Kingston spends another single season in the Hudson River League, which again
disbands at season's end.

- Troy joins International Association (International League) and finishes seventh (28-
80, .259). Club makes 614 errors in 107 games. "Gentleman George" Haddock sets IL
record with 20 straight losses.  Perry Werden (46 games, .185) with Troy; hits .341 in
1536 minor league games; will lead NL with 29 triples in 1893. Troy leaves the IA at
season's end. Albany commits 656 errors in 106 games and finishes last (18-88, 170).

- Outside Sandy Hill (now Hudson Falls), former major league outfielder John W. Glenn
accidentally  is shot to death by a local lawman who was attempting to rescue him from
a lynch mob. (November 10).

1889 - Jacob deBeers begins to manufacture baseballs in a Johnstown barn.

- Future major leaguer George Davis begins his professional career with an independent
Albany club managed by former major leaguer Tom York.

1889 - Future major league shortstop Jimmy Esmond born in Albany (October 8).

1890s - Charles Martin Conlon employed at the Troy Press.

1890 - Future White Sox righthander Mel Wolfgang born in Albany (March 20)

- Albany (70-41), Troy (52-37), Johnstown-Gloversville (46-46) and Cobleskill join
NYS League; Troy, featuring early black pitcher George Washington Stovey, wins
NYS League pennant. Bill Dahlen plays with second-place Cobleskill in NYS League;
85 games at second base -- .343.

- Former major league outfielder Gid Gardner with Hudson club.

1891 - Troy and Albany join the Eastern Association, Troy finishes fifth (46-58, .442),
only one of four clubs to actually finish the season. Albany finishes second.

1892 - Eastern Association is re-named the Eastern League; Troy and Albany retain
membership.

- Birth of future major league catcher Mickey Devine at Albany (May 9)

1893 - Albany finishes sixth in the Eastern League (International League) and drops out.
Will not return to IL until 1932. Former major leaguer Lew Whistler (4 HR, .340) with
club.

1894 - Sy Seymour stars with the amateur Ridgefield Athletic Club of Albany.

- Troy finishes seventh in Eastern Association; does poorly at the gate and disbands at
season's end.

- NYS League re-forms - includes Amsterdam (30-21), Johnstown (22-20), Kingston
(13-31), Albany (19-12) and Pittsfield (13-17). Amsterdam wins pennant; Albany and
Pittsfield disband on July 7.

1895 - J. DeBeers & Sons moves a new factory on West State Street in Johnstown.

- Schenectady (23-26), Gloversville (20-28), and Troy join the NYS League; Troy (7-
7) and Albany (6-8) drop out on May 20); league folds mid-July.

- NY Giants defeat Schenectady 11-6 before 4,000 fans (April 12).

- Future 41-game winner Jack Chesbro plays with Albany and Jonstown in NYS league
(7-10).

1896 - Albany native Cy Seymour makes major league debut with the New York Giants
(April 22).

1897 - Albany-native John Pappalau makes debut with Cleveland (NL), will pitch
professionally until 1914 but never return to majors.

1898 - Gloversville's Parkhurst Field (later JAF Park) is first used for baseball;
McKeevers and Adelphis play to a tie as the game ends when the only ball is lost (May
31)

- Albany-native Cy Seymour (25-19, 3.18) leads the NL in strikeouts with 239.

1899 - North Adams native Happy Jack Chesbro debuts in the major leagues with
Pittsburgh (July 12).

- New York State League re-forms—includes Albany (54-62), and Schenectady (29-
77); Auburn moves to Troy in mid-season.

- Facing financial difficulties the Schenectady club reorganizes; players take 10% pay
cut. (July 25)

- Schenectady manager Lew Whistler arrested for "grand larceny" of team receipts
(July); charges are later dropped and he returns as manager in 1900.

- Future major league outfielder George Browne with Troy
.
Baseball is truly the National Pastime, and
that means that it has touched each and
every region of the American nation,
including our own. Capital Region baseball
has a rich history in our viewing area,
stretching back to the earliest days of the
game.
Use The Great Baseball Timeline to see if
you can find out more about baseball in your
own town or county. To learn about
distinguished black players in our area. Or
to learn about players who have overcome
physical handicaps to star on local diamonds.
Play ball!
Village of Scotia Team
Village of Scotia Team
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Capital Region Baseball Timeline: