“People ask me what I do in winter when there’s no baseball. I’ll tell you what I do. I stare out the window and wait for spring.” – Rogers Hornsby
April was the month of Opening Day to baseball fans. Whether it was Major League on the radio or hometown players in the dirt lots, people in the area enjoyed their games. Rivalry was big and local teams traveled. It didn’t cost a lot of money and unlike today, they didn’t have to have the best of everything.
My grandpa who was born in 1910 was a huge Cubs fan. The cussing and yelling got real loud at their house during a ball game. He didn’t always get to watch his beloved Cubbies play on cable television though. My grandpa saw a lot of changes in baseball during his lifetime.
In 1921 the first major league game was aired on the radio. People would gather at someone’s house or a tavern, where ever there was a radio so they could listen to a game.
Back in the late 1800s and early 1900s, every small town had an amateur team. These games were very competitive and well attended.
Two baseball games are scheduled for Winslow. The Terre Haute Walk-Overs will be here Saturday and the Ohio Valley League team from Evansville will be here Sunday. These are both strong teams and lovers of baseball will miss something good if they fail to see these games. Lefty Smith will be on the mound in both games for the locals and a couple of warm games are assured. – Winslow Dispatch June 7, 1912
Saturday and Sunday were great days in baseball circles in Winslow. The Harrisburg Illinois Miners came in Saturday and played the Tigers in the afternoon winning in a 6 to 2 score. The Saturday afternoon crowd was one of the largest ever assembled at Riverside. Sunday afternoon another large crowd greeted the players, the game at the close standing 11 to 4. – Winslow Dispatch August 26, 1921
The 1921 Muren Browns
Team members are : #1 Midge Eddington, #2 Condo Conder, #3 Curtis McCandless, #4 Hobart McCandless, #5 Lawrence Humes, #6 Paulie Wade, #7 Frank Norrick, #8 Elmer Quiggins, #9 Sherman Loveless (absent when picture was taken) , Umpire Samp Hopkins, Manager King Whitman – donated by Jane McCandless, her husband Elwood “Mac” McCandless was the son of Hobart.
The Muren Browns played their home games in a lot behind the Muren School at the corner of Ayrshire Road and the Line Road.
The 1934 Winslow Merchants
Pictured above is a photo of a Winslow Independent Baseball team taken about 1934. The only names known are: Elwood “Red” Smith (2nd from left, back row), Adrian Wood (3rd from left back row), Junie Davis (4th from left back row), Sleepy John Wood, back row last one on right side, (Front row on left kneeling) Earl “Pete”Stewart , Steele DeJarnett (1st row, 2nd from left kneeling and 1st row. second from right, Joe Biggs, and 1st row on right side, Kenneth Richardson. Winslow’s field was Riverside Park.
May 28, 1920 Winslow Dispatch
It appears baseball season was in full swing.
The Winslow ball team defeated the Evansville Eagles Sunday at Riverside Park, the score at the close standing 5 to 0. “Pinkey” Moore was in the box for the locals and fanned fifteen men while the Eagle pitcher fanned but 4. The game was 3 to 0 until the eighth when by a double Winslow ran in four score. Next Sunday the Tell City Grays will be here. The Tell City team defeated the local team last year, both games being hotly contested. A large crowd is expected to be here next Sunday to witness this fast game.
A big ball game will be scheduled at Stendal on Sunday, May 30th when the Holland ball team will play the Stendal team. These teams are pretty evenly matched, A fine game is promised the fans who attend. The game will be called at 2 P. M.
An interesting ball game was played at Muren Sunday between the Arthur Grays and the Muren Browns. The score was 3 to 0. Not a score was made until the sixth inning when the Arthur boys began hitting the pill for scores. Harris and Taylor were the Arthur battery while West, McCandless and Loveless were the Muren battery.
June 22, 1937
Petersburg had a local team named the Petersburg Independents, coached by Lonnie Spade. Their lot was called Higgins Field.
Sprit Juice Studios, producing a new documentary on Gil Hodges in the efforts to get him into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2020, were in Pike County the month of March shooting local shots as Gil went to school in Petersburg.
The Gil Hodges Mural on the corner of 61 and 57.
Gil Hodges played for the Petersburg Independents. Pike and Gibson Counties share his fame. Gil’s father, Charlie Hodges was a coal miner in Gibson County. His mother was Irene Horstmeyer, from the Winslow area. Gil’s father, Charlie played baseball on the local teams. Back then, coal miners moved where the work was. Charlie moved his family from Francisco to Petersburg to work in a mine there. It wasn’t long before commuting became more of an option and rather than move the family, they lived in Petersburg while Charlie worked at other mines. Gil graduated from Petersburg High School.
My Genealogy Blog
This month I revisited my great grandmother, Mayme Oliver Parker Youngblood.
The reason I am revisiting Mayme is that I received a message from another great granddaughter. Barbara is from her son Claude’s line, also lives in Indiana, but unfortunately in Merrillville so it’s not like we can meet up for lunch to discuss family. We have been communicating ….
1923 was a good year for Winslow. Housing boomed, everyone wanted to live here and we got the park land on the river.