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Going to Ebbets Field

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  • Going to Ebbets Field

    My father used to claim that when he was a kid, an uncle would give him 50 cents on a Saturday morning and he would be able to go to Ebbets Field that afternoon. 5 cents both ways for the trolley, 10 cents for the bleachers, and the rest for a program, hotdog, soda.

    Does that seem right to folks?

    (And all of this assumes that in 1941, an 8 year old could travel on the trolley alone)
    Let's go Mets!

  • #2
    I went to Ebbets Field the other day. Used to play ball in Prospect Park for years - in the early 90s, never realized the shadows of Ebbets were so close, till I saw an aerial photo last year. But I went the other day and walked around the perimeter of the block. You'd never know and yet, by the sheer vacuum surrounding it, it's almost as though I can feel something's wrong. A very very sad day for Brooklyn, even now.

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    • #3
      Here is the definitive description of what it was like going to Ebbets Field:

      http://www.petehamill.com/ebbetsfield.html

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Squeeze Play View Post
        Here is the definitive description of what it was like going to Ebbets Field:

        http://www.petehamill.com/ebbetsfield.html
        Great story...love the detail, and the excitement and the enthusiasism of the author towards Jackie and the Dodgers in general.
        MySpace Codes

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        • #5
          there is a story that Hamill tells on himself about a dinner he and Jack Newfield, who wrote the definitive RFK biography, were having. after a quick 15 or 20 libations, they both took the challenge of writing down the worst people in history. both took a cocktail napkin (which were in profusion on the table) and separately wrote down three names. when they compared the lists, they found them to be identical: Adloph Hitler, Josef Stalin and Walter O'Malley.

          Newfield died much too early (2004) while Hamill recently achieved a milestone, garnering his high school degree (an honorary degree from Regis HS, a Jesuit school in New York that Hamill departed in his sophmore year). Pete is 75 and my favoirte piece of his, among many, was a back page story, in the NY Post, written the day Sugar Ray Robinson died, commenorating Robinson's last professional fight and Miles Davis, tearfully, pleading, in the dressing room, with the fighter to quit. It was 800 words and every one was perfect.
          After 1957, it seemed like we would never laugh again. Of course, we did. Its just that we were never young again.

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          • #6
            Last month I took my wife to see where Ebbets Field once stood.

            On the surface it was disappointing, as the stark housing projects have removed any sense of the great park. But the rise of Bedford Avenue outside the right field wall and the presence of so many buildings that were there when EF was up reminded me that still, 53 years after 1957, there is a trace of that magical place still detectable by those who went there. I got a Hammil-like feeling.

            I also went to the corner of Empire Blvd and Rogers Avenue, where Toomey's Diner remains. Once a place where Dodgers ate, it now caters to a Caribbean crowd. I believe it is the last remaining business still there from the Dodger days.

            As it happens, last night I watched some You Tube videos of Dodgertown in its abandoned state. One LA fan went there last October and lamented its demise. Struck me as history repeating itself, as the Dodgers sold the complex to Vero Beach in 2000 or so, with the town hoping the purchase would assure the team staying there.

            But, alas. they did to Vero Beach what they did to Brooklyn one year after selling Ebbets Field to the Kratter organization. Now, Vero Beach and Brooklyn have only Dodger memories.
            Still patiently waiting @ at Sullivan & McKeever (once THE corner in MLB) for the Brooks to return from their extended road trip.

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            • #7
              I wouldn't hang around those apartments at night!!

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              • #8
                A Brooklyn fan when asked what he would do were he in the same room as Hitler, Stalin and O'Malley, and had a revolver with two bullets, replied, "That's easy; I'd shoot O'Malley twice."

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                • #9
                  It's a strange area walking from the Brooklyn Museum. I went there to see an exhibit and going back into the subway my eye caught "Ebbets Field Apartments" - well heck, I had nowhere else to be, so I'm going to see the site of Ebbets Field. It's a good 15-20 minute walk from the IRT stop and when you walk past the handsome brownstones you notice everybody is either black or Hasidic, which is slightly amusing coming from San Francisco where there's virtually no Hasidim. It's not really a bad neighborhood. Park Slope is quite chi-chi now and Midwood's always been middle class and it's not quite as nice as those two, but it's not bad. I don't think the apartments are too bad either, it's just a rather old building now (almost 50 years old) and outdated in the sense that it's just much too big for that area. You do feel it though - it reminded me of being in Europe and walking through Roman ruins or the onetime site of a shrine.

                  Coming back I did get one of the all-time great stories. I walked around Park Slope and passed a Jewish home for the elderly. I should say I was wearing an NY Giants cap that day since the Giants were in town. I walked passed this little old guy having a smoke and he looked up at me and said "I hate the Giants" in a gutteral howl. After I stopped laughing I talked to him for a couple minutes. Turns out he went to a couple World Series games at Ebbets Field and went to the first game of the playoff in '51. Rooted for the Mets now but said even today he still hates the Giants and was hoping they'd lose that night before wishing me farewell.

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                  • #10
                    You may not be aware but Brooklyn is undergoing a renaissance in many areas once given up for dead and unhliveable mostly because of the absurd cost of living in Manhattan....Williamsburg is a perfect example...just minutes from midtown via the subway and rents for half or less the price of similar accomodations in Manhattan. Other areas have shown embryonic signs of the same thing happening. The usual garbage thrown out is the area where EF was located (it could be called Flatbush, it could be called Crown Heights) is totally beyond repair and it is not really true....go less than a mile west and you're in Park Sloope, the epicenter of yuppyland in Brooklyn. Unfortunately,m as noted and I hate to do this about where people live, the EF Apartments look like a decaying project and of course we know what happens with the homeless...they are put into whatever housing the social services in the city can come up with with its resultant increase in strains upon the schools in the area and the drug dealing (just a fact of life) and the crime. Getting rid of the EF Apartments would go a long way to helping stabilize this neighborhood. Whethe3r it's practical or going to happen is another thing.

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                    • #11
                      Agreed, MATHA531 -- Red Hook is another example. Heck, Williamsburg was a "frontier" 15 years ago. People have been pushing out into Bushwick, which used to be a pretty desperate neighborhood, for the past few years. It's just another stop or two out on the L train.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by MATHA531 View Post
                        You may not be aware but Brooklyn is undergoing a renaissance in many areas once given up for dead and unhliveable mostly because of the absurd cost of living in Manhattan....Williamsburg is a perfect example...just minutes from midtown via the subway and rents for half or less the price of similar accomodations in Manhattan. Other areas have shown embryonic signs of the same thing happening. The usual garbage thrown out is the area where EF was located (it could be called Flatbush, it could be called Crown Heights) is totally beyond repair and it is not really true....go less than a mile west and you're in Park Sloope, the epicenter of yuppyland in Brooklyn. Unfortunately,m as noted and I hate to do this about where people live, the EF Apartments look like a decaying project and of course we know what happens with the homeless...they are put into whatever housing the social services in the city can come up with with its resultant increase in strains upon the schools in the area and the drug dealing (just a fact of life) and the crime. Getting rid of the EF Apartments would go a long way to helping stabilize this neighborhood. Whethe3r it's practical or going to happen is another thing.
                        If those apartments are still privately held (i.e. not public housing) its only a matter of time before they go to make room for more upscale development. Its a fact of life in NYC. When I was at NYU for undergrad the village was a dump. A few years later when I was back for my masters they were buying up every piece of property they could get their hands on and were putting up new buildings.

                        I am sure it will make a lot of people on this board cry to see those apartments come down.

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                        • #13
                          Heck if you bought it and turned it into an upscale development with some nods back to its days as a ballpark you could probably make a frickin' fortune. "Ebbets Landing" or some BS real estate name, with blue and white buildings and a courtyard designed to "evoke" (another BS real estate term) the days of yore.

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                          • #14
                            Hell, rebuild the field. That alone would do wonders for that neighborhood. Just a matter of finding a new place for the current tenants to live. Maybe make it a municipal park or something, or have a deal with the Cyclones to split home games.

                            I realize the impracticality of rebuilding a 32,000 seat stadium without a tenant but I'm sure we could make something work.

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                            • #15
                              Well the time for that would have been before building KeySpan Park. But you would still have the same issue the Dodgers had i.e. lack of parking public transport.

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