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Depression of the 1890s

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  • SABR Steve
    replied
    I don't think Soden was on good terms with James Billings either, a fellow triumvir. I didn't realize that Soden was in Baseball's First Stars.

    Somewhere I read that ball players considered it an honor to be a "reserved" player. At least at first. Thanks for the info.

    Leave a comment:


  • Brian McKenna
    replied
    yeah - of course he started the reserve system

    from baseball's first stars
    mass. native
    druggist before entering union army
    opened a roofing business in boston
    amateur ballplayer
    on the 1874 england tour with boston red stockings as an outfielder - bought into team and eventually gained control in 1877
    lent ny club $60K and became a minority stock holder in '92 i think
    became a powerful figure in nl following death of hulbert in 1882
    sold club in 1906 - worked in roofing business until death

    he was a well-known cheapskate like you said so it was easy to lure his men away - i know the griffith (of chi) couldn't stand him - grif, one of the insurrection leaders 1900-01, asked soden for two tickets to a game one day in 1900 - he was refused - at the meetings forming the players' union grif spoke rather candidly that he wanted to "screw (my word)" soden in any way he could and used this as fuel, in his mind at least, to drive the union - grif later embarrassed soden in front of reporters proving him to be a liar during union negotiations - plus grif was a leading recruiter for the al - not sure of the specifics but i would venture to guess he specifically targeted some of soden's men

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  • SABR Steve
    replied
    Originally posted by bkmckenna
    interestingly beaneaters manager frank selee fired the first shot in the battle for players between the al and nl when he ignored reservation rights and contacted comiskey's dick padden on 12/12/1900 -- at least as far as we know

    the current red sox were a late comer - boston wasn't officially announced as an al city until 1/23/1901

    i guess collins was the main recruiter in boston - but it wasn't a hard sell - an unrecognized soldier here was clark griffith who had been the most vocal member of the union - he had been advising players since early in 1900 not to sign nl contracts for 1901

    the nl presidency was vacant but the league was run by the forerunner of the national commission - a three-man committee - jim hart of chicago, arthur soden of boston and was chaired by john brush - three capable men
    Arthur Soden was nearing the end of his rein in Boston. I have the feeling that this cheapskate was very important in the Beaneaters/Braves deterioration in Boston. Do you know much about him?

    Leave a comment:


  • Brian McKenna
    replied
    interestingly beaneaters manager frank selee fired the first shot in the battle for players between the al and nl when he ignored reservation rights and contacted comiskey's dick padden on 12/12/1900 -- at least as far as we know

    the current red sox were a late comer - boston wasn't officially announced as an al city until 1/23/1901

    i guess collins was the main recruiter in boston - but it wasn't a hard sell - an unrecognized soldier here was clark griffith who had been the most vocal member of the union - he had been advising players since early in 1900 not to sign nl contracts for 1901

    the nl presidency was vacant but the league was run by the forerunner of the national commission - a three-man committee - jim hart of chicago, arthur soden of boston and was chaired by john brush - three capable men

    Leave a comment:


  • SABR Steve
    replied
    Originally posted by southendgrounds
    Standard National League admission price was 50 cents, standard American Association price was 25 cents. 25 cent admission was part of the AA's marketing strategy of 25 cent admission, beer served, baseball on Sunday. NL wanted to lure "higher class" clientele with no beer, no Sunday ball, and higher 50 cent price. After the settlement, in the 1890's, teams were allowed to sell tickets at 25 cents and many of the old AA teams did so. When the American League went big time in 1901, they instituted the AA's old 25 cent admission policy which helped them win fans in cities where they competed directly such as Boston, Philly and Chicago, and later St. Louis and NY.
    Also helping was the expiration of the National Agreement, a favorable economy, and a two-year vacancy in the National League presidency. The Boston Somersets ignored all reservation rights, as did the whole AL, and raided the Beaneaters, nabbing Jimmy Collins, Chick Stahl, and Buck Freeman.
    It gave the Americans the upper hand in the Hub, which they never really relinquished.

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  • southendgrounds
    replied
    Originally posted by steveox
    I dont know anything about baseball in late 19th century.But i do know hot dogs ,popcorn and cokes were very very cheap back then.I bet tickets even cost a quarter.
    Standard National League admission price was 50 cents, standard American Association price was 25 cents. 25 cent admission was part of the AA's marketing strategy of 25 cent admission, beer served, baseball on Sunday. NL wanted to lure "higher class" clientele with no beer, no Sunday ball, and higher 50 cent price. After the settlement, in the 1890's, teams were allowed to sell tickets at 25 cents and many of the old AA teams did so. When the American League went big time in 1901, they instituted the AA's old 25 cent admission policy which helped them win fans in cities where they competed directly such as Boston, Philly and Chicago, and later St. Louis and NY.

    Leave a comment:


  • Buzzaldrin
    replied
    Nope, nary a one of them. My sole connection to baseball discussion lies within public forums like these or private chats with guys like Joltin' Joe or Sultan, although the last six or seven months I've been pretty much half time between Stockholm and Munich- and in Munich there's a few guys that at least understand the sport.

    I'm a Houston boy from the start, and I got a package from my mom last week (and, by the way, my mom out stats and outargues all of us, but she hates and fears the internet because she's kind of old- how many people do we miss out on because of that?) with the official NL champs shirt in it.

    I love my mom. Thing is, I really didn't care if we won or lost the series- I really didn't. I just wanted to be there. Mom took me to my first Astros game in 1970; we sat through game 5 in 1980 together behind third base, I saw Nolan Ryan's fifth no-hitter as a birthday present (my birthday's september 28th, but I don't think mom and Nolie arranged it together; I think he just wung it), I watched us blow it in 86 because of one umpire's bad call, I lived through Rader, Metzger, Cedeno, Cruz (our family's all time hero- hands down- forget about Cobb, Ruth, Williams, etc.) the B's, damnit, everybody!

    This year- I was so so very happy just to BE there. You got no idea (well, maybe you do).

    Leave a comment:


  • Brian McKenna
    replied
    are there many baseball fans to chat with in sweden near you?

    Leave a comment:


  • Buzzaldrin
    replied
    Sure was, I am 157 years old.

    Hey, did you know that the Athletics were called the Expos for a few years after the 1876 Philadelphia Exposition?

    Ok, that's a lie, but I HAVE to start telling people that.

    Leave a comment:


  • Brian McKenna
    replied
    Originally posted by Buzzaldrin
    Well, I figured it wouldn't hurt to be nice once in a while. And as to ginger ale- what we got in the states was Johnny Loughlin's modern version of the the roughly 1850's Irish standard (which was big, but in the states soda water was the drink). Loughlin was Canadian and came up with his spin in 1890 in Toronto, but he didn't really market Canada Dry Giner Ale on a large scale until 1907.

    Charles Hires had been getting attention for his root beer since the Philly Expo of 1876, however.
    it sounds like you were there

    Leave a comment:


  • Buzzaldrin
    replied
    Well, I figured it wouldn't hurt to be nice once in a while. And as to ginger ale- what we got in the states was Johnny Loughlin's modern version of the the roughly 1850's Irish standard (which was big, but in the states soda water was the drink). Loughlin was Canadian and came up with his spin in 1890 in Toronto, but he didn't really market Canada Dry Giner Ale on a large scale until 1907.

    Charles Hires had been getting attention for his root beer since the Philly Expo of 1876, however.

    Leave a comment:


  • Brian McKenna
    replied
    Originally posted by Buzzaldrin
    Funny you write that, because hot dogs were available at ballparks for the first time in St. Louis in the year of the Panic itself (1893- thank you Herr Von der Ahe), popcorn didn't really take off nationally till the 1890's, and Coke went from a (fairly) local drink in 1890 to the national favorite by a landslide in 1900.

    I'm too lazy to look up the costs.
    buzz - you're giving him too much credit

    wasn't ginger ale the first big soda? just asking

    Leave a comment:


  • Brian McKenna
    replied
    part of the think was to get the ladies to the park to:
    1) spur male attendance
    2) try to curb rowdiness

    Leave a comment:


  • TonyK
    replied
    A quarter was what most minor league teams charged for admission. Some tacked on another ten cents to sit in the grandstand. Ladies preferred to sit in the grandstand for protection against the rain, wind, sun and the rowdy element over in the bleachers.

    Many minor league clubs offered Ladies Days with free admission, or ladies always only paid 10 or 15 cents admission. The thinking was try to get the entire family to the ballpark. It was not unusual for hundreds of women to attend a minor league game in the 1890's. Many of them were young and single and very keen on the ballplayers.

    Leave a comment:


  • Guest's Avatar
    Guest replied
    Originally posted by bkmckenna
    certainly nl owners were in a much different position in 1892 than they were in 1891 or 1890 - they were again atop the ladder by themselves and they instituted policies as such - this is one instance in a long chain of fluctuations of power between management and labor

    this was not a time in american business that was particularly kind to the workers and nl owners were no different from any other mogul - the players were particularly behind it in mlb with its monopoly, its weilding of the reserve clause and the blacklist - its almost singlehanded control over a players future - add to that a depression with collapsing minor league teams and leagues themselves - skilled ballplayers had few choices and, rightfully, their disgruntled level rose culminating in the events of 1900

    the players union began in june 1900 and from the beginning griffith urged repeatedly for nl players to refuse to sign a contract for 1901 and the union even drew up its own universal contract (which johnson would later accept along with the union itself) - the june meeting included an american federation of labor rep but in the end players did not join the afl but certainly that gained the attention of nl owners - the majority of players from each team joined the union and sights were set on including the minor leagues

    griffith had a couple confrontations with owners and at their december meeting the owners said flatly that they would not negotiate with them - that led to griffith allying with johnson and got the ball rolling - a list of their demands shows just how much control over everything the owners had
    increase in wage ceiling
    control over being traded
    limitation on reserve clause
    prevention of owners unjustly depriving players of a portion of their salary
    limit on suspensions
    payment of medical bills
    provision for an arbitration board
    adoption of players' universal contract
    provision that players could similarly void contract with 10-day notice
    club paying for uniforms

    a depression certainly has an effect on business - management and labor - its effects may be subtle (as in the 1890s) but it still reverberates throughout the industry
    I agree with much of what you say about labor and managment of that period. I think this period was among the worst in American history to be a laborer. This Panic was part of the boom and bust cycles that plagued the nation from the time of Andrew Jackson until World War II.

    I'm kind of surprised that the AFL was courting baseball. The AFL was pretty elitist and the stature of pro athletes at that time was pretty suspect.

    Leave a comment:

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