Archive for January, 2009

Now batting Mr. Darcy….

Tuesday, January 6th, 2009


The opening of the 20th century found baseball trying to pin down the games genesis and a great need to label it as an “American” creation was the real goal. In 1905 the Mills Commission set out to do just that.

This past week we celebrated the 101st anniversary of Albert Spalding receiving the letter from the commission that named Abner Doubleday as the creator of the game and the birthplace was placed in Cooperstown New York in 1939. This of course is the current home of the Baseball Hall of Fame. Countless hours have been spent in an attempt to debunk the findings of the Commission since its release. By now the general knowledge amongst even the uneducated baseball fan is that it’s a load of bull. Thus it always amuses me when I see items like this one penned by Jane Austen in her novel, Northanger Abbey.

“It was not very wonderful that Catherine, who had nothing heroic about her, should prefer cricket, base-ball, riding on horseback, and running about the country at the age of fourteen, to books.”¬†

This¬† item was touched on in UK Telegraph last month, of course if it was in an American paper it would focus on the obvious, the base-ball and branch off on some other examples. This article instead is more sensible it branches off on some fine Jane Austen links, leaving the base-ball lover to have to turn to Google to learn moreabout the origin of the game, I’ll start you off with this link.