Here is something you don't see everyday.
Featured here is a 1889 Brooklyn Bridegrooms scorecard. As you may know, this year was the franchises last as a member of the American Association. The following season they would join the National League where they continue to this day. BTW, the Bridegrooms moniker is one of the many different nicknames given to the Brooklyn club. At the time, teams did not have official names. As for how Bridegrooms became popular, as the story goes several of the teams players got engaged at the same time, so naturally the fans (and the press) chose what was most suitable. (If you're interested in reading a biography focused on the club when they were known as the Bridegrooms I suggest reading Ronald Shafer's book called "When the Dodgers were Bridegrooms." Check out my interview with the author here.)
This scorecards is one of the earliest artifacts of its kind from the Dodgers franchise. Best yet, Goodwin & Co. auction house was kind enough to share pics of several of the pages within it in their auction listing. I've captured all of those photos below, and included the biographies created for each individual player so that you may learn a little bit more about a few of the earliest Dodger players. Since the pics provided aren't particularly clear I've done my best to recreate them. Check out these pics and biographies below the fold.
As you can see below, the club was playing their games at Washington Park; their very first home and onetime headquarters for General George Washington during the Revolutionary War. I had previously written extensively about this ballpark here.
Mr. W. (Bill) H. McGunnigle, the present Manager of the Brooklyn Club, has had a varied experience in the base ball world. Born in Boston in 1855, his first experience as a ball player was in 1875, with the Junior Howard Club of Brockton, Mass. In 1876 and 1877 he played with the Fall River Club, the champions of New England. Developing great talent as a pitcher, he was secured by the Buffalo Club, and in '78, '79 and '80 he alternated in the box with Galvin, leading all the League Pitchers in '79; and it was by his remarkable work in the box in '80 that the Buffalo Club won the championship from Chicago, when the latter virtually had it secured. After a two years' rest McGunnigle re-appeared in 1883 as a member of the Saginaw Club, in the North-Western League, and in 1881 went to Bay City, Foutz being in the same team. Besides Captaining the team, he alternated as pitcher and right fielder. In 1885 and 1886 he managed the Brockton, Mass., team, and in 1887 by good work he brought the Lowell Club to the front in the New England League. He was secured by the Brooklyn Club in 1888, and to his untiring, conscientious efforts much of the brilliant work of the club during last season is due.
David (Dave) L. Foutz, the first baseman of the Brooklyn Club, was born in Baltimore, Md., 1862, and obtained his early experience with the amateur clubs in and about that city. It was while playing first base for the Waverly Club that public attention was drawn to him. His ambition, however, was to be a pitcher, and as no opening could be found for his budding talent in the East he pluckily determined to "go West," and didn't stop until be reached Colorado. He joined the Denver Club in 1879, and did unexpectedly good work in the box. From Denver he went to Leadville, and won the State championship for his club in 1882, pitching in forty games, thirty-nine of which were victories. In 1883 we find Mr. Foutz with the Bay City Club of the North-Western League, and during that year and in 1884 he earned such a reputation as a pitcher, that, in order to secure his services, the St. Louis Club of the American Association had to purchase the entire Bay City team. The record made by this quiet gentleman and earnest player with the St. Louis Browns during 1885, 1886 and 1887, is too well known to need mention. For two years Brooklyn struggled to secure him, and finally did no in 1888, and this year he returns to his old place at first base.
Wm. (Adonis) H. Terry, who has been a member of the Brooklyn Club since 1883, the year of its organization, was born in Westfield, Mass., in 1864 and early developed natural ability as a ball player. The Rosedales, of Bridgeport, Conn., a very plucky and enterprising club, and of much renown in 1881, secured young Terry as a pitcher when barely sixteen years of age, and the work he did in that and the succeeding year prompted the Brooklyn Club to secure his services. His advent in the professional arena was a most auspicious one, and he soon became popular with the patrons of the game. Of all the men who have worn a Brooklyn uniform during the last six years, Terry is the only one who has remained with the Club from its first year. Mr. Terry, while looked upon as a pitcher, is an excellent general ball player, filling both infield and outfield positions exceedingly well. He has taken part in the most brilliant victories of the Brooklyn Club. On July 24, 1886, Brooklyn defeated the Champion St. Louis Browns : Score, 1-0, Terry in the box, and Brooklyn shut out the New York Giants, Keefe pitching, by a 4-0 score, New York getting only two scratch hits, both made by Ward.
George (Germany) J. Smith, the short stop of the Brooklyn Club, is a native of Pittsburgh, Pa., famous for the number of brilliant players it has given to the base ball profession. George was born in 1863 and when quite a youngster joined the well known Hunter Club as pitcher. In 1879 and 1880 he gave up pitching, preferring to play third base and at short. Determining to have something to depend on when his ball playing days were over, young Smith went to Altoona and secured a good position in the Pennsylvania Railroad shops, which soon developed his naturally strong physical powers. In 1881 he joined the Altoona Club, playing short, and soon made a name for himself. He remained in Altoon until May, 1884, when the Cleveland League Club secured his services. He played second base for awhile, but after the famous escapade of McCormick, Glassock, Dunlap and Briody in deserting Cleveland and going to the Union Association, Smith was placed in his natural position at short. He joined the Brooklyn Club in 1885 with several other Cleveland men, and his brilliant work in the infield has made him a valuable member of the team/
Robert (Bob) H. Clark is a Kentuckian, having been born in Covington in 1864. For years Cincinnati and the adjacent towns of Covington and Newport, Ky., have been noted for the great number of their amateur teams and from which many famous ball players have graduated. It was among these teams "Bob," as every one affectionately calls him, learned his first base ball lessons, first as an outfielder and then at second base. Always a ready and willing worker, he was induced once in an emergency to go behind the bat, and developed such ability that he determined thereafter to devote himself entirely to catching. In 1885 Mr. Clark made a great reputation as one of the catchers of the famous Atlanta Club, which won the Southern League Championship. It was the record he made that year which warranted the Brooklyn Club in securing him in 1886, since which time he has remained with the team. In the six years of its existence the Brooklyn Club has had no more faithful or earnest player in its team, and no more fearless or plucky man ever stood behind a batsman. Invariably good natured and compassionate, "Bob" Clark has host of friends on and off the diamond.
Michael (Mickey) F. Hughes is a typical sample of a bright, clean-cut, plucky and nobby New York boy. He was born the other side of the Bridge in 1866, and got his first experience, as thousands of other boys had to do in the big city, on the open lots and vacant blocks about Central Park, and always under difficulties, for while the boys were not chasing the ball the police were chasing them. Young Hughes at an early day showed marked ability as a pitcher, being always cool and steady, and with excellent control of his temper even under great provocation. His first professional experience was in 1885, when he joined the Jersey City Club, and he held his own most creditably, although in the team as pitchers at the time were Tiernan, now of New York, and Mattimore, of the Athletics. In 1886 he played with the Waterbury Club of the Eastern League. 1887 found him with the "Little Giants," of Newark, then in the International Association, and he aided materially in securing the championship that season. Crane, New York's pitcher, was with Toronto that year, and it was a question of constant discussion as to which of the two, Hughes or Crane, was the better man. In the fall of 1887 Brooklyn obtained Mt. Hughes release from Newark. His work during 1888 was of a nature to warrant steady and constant improvement.
John (Pop) S. Corkhill, conceded to be on of the best general ball players in the Association or League, was born in Parkersburgh, Chester county, Pa., in 1858. When eighteen years of age he joined the popular "Our Boys" amateur club of Philadelphia, making his debut as a pitcher. His next appearance was with another amateur club called the "Philadelphias," in 1879, playing second base. In 1882 the Philadelphia Alliance Club of the National League secured Mr. Corkhill for first base, and he developed great proficiency in the position, but in the latter part of that season he was induced to go to Baltimore, still remaining at first. So quickly did his reputation increase, the Cincinnati Club made most liberal proposition to Baltimore to secure him, and he was induced to go West. It was intended to keep him at first base, but as Cincinnati finally secured "Long" John Reilly from the "Mets," Mr. Corkhill went to the outfield, where he soon displayed the same marked ability as in either of his previous positions. His great work with Cincinnati the past four years is a feature of the history of the game during that time. After near two years of persistent effort Mr. Corkhill was secured by the Brooklyn Club, and as in the past his work will be of the best.
* Please follow on twitter @ernestreyes *
* Like Dodgers Blue Heaven on facebook *
* Dodgers Blue Heaven home page *