Baseball on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, 1866–1950


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About the Book

By 1900 Maryland’s Eastern Shore, along the western side of the Delmarva Peninsula, was acknowledged in the national press as a hotbed of baseball activity. By the 1920s the game was fully ingrained into local community life, central to the summer social season among the towns and villages that measured their worth by the quality of their teams.
Providing fresh insight into early 20th century baseball at its grassroots, this book explores the Chesapeake Bay region as a case study for the enthusiasm (and hubris) the game brought to rural American life, in context with national trends and influences.

About the Author(s)

Marty Payne lives and writes from his home in St. Michaels, Maryland. His writings have appeared in local and national publications.

Bibliographic Details

Marty Payne
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 259
Bibliographic Info: 37 photos, appendices, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2023
pISBN: 978-1-4766-9218-0
eISBN: 978-1-4766-5033-3
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vii

Preface 1

Introduction 3
Part I—Frost Out of the Hands
1. Before the Shore 7

2. The First Pitch 11

3. Baseball Prevails 22

4. Grass in the Springtime 33

5. The Bushes Blossom 44

6. For the Almighty Dollar 59

7. End of an Era 77
Part II—The Baby Loop

8. No Town Too Small 93

9. The Eyes of Landis 104

10. Umpire Uprising 118

11. Chaos 124

12. Promise Kept 131

13. Transition 134
Part III—Heyday

14. Another League 145

15. Wonder Club 148

16. Secret Deal 158

17. Fog, Tomatoes, and Rabbits 166

18. Be Careful What You Wish For 171
Part IV—G.I. Jitters

19. Will Greenville Yield? 179

20. Watermelon, Skunks, and More Tomatoes 191

21. And Take Your Batboy with You 198
Afterword 207

Appendix A: Selected Biographical Sketches 209

Appendix B: Players and Umpires 222

Appendix C: Eastern Shore League Standings, 1922–1949 226

Chapter Notes 229

Bibliography 243

Index 247