Kent Base Ball Club
L. C. Earle, Secretary
Grand Rapids Daily Eagle, April 6, 1867
KENT BASE BALL CLUB
An attempt was made, last spring
and summer to organize and keep alive a Base Ball Club in our city. A club
was formed, officers elected, and one or two meetings held, and from some
unaccountable cause, no more after, and nothing more was heard of it,
except when some of our young men would get together and talk over the
things that were.
Again the experiment of organizing
and keeping up a club of this description is being tried. On the evening
of April 4, 1867, a small number of the energetic, wide-awake young men of
the city, held a meeting at Perkins' leather store, Canal st., and
organized a club to be known as the "Kent Base Ball Club." Mr. D. K.
Hulbert was called to the chair and L. C. Earle appointed Secretary, pro tem. The club then proceeded to the election of officers, with the
Treasurer.―A. P. Sinclair
Directors.―W. S. Earle, L. Withey, John W. Avery
following business was then transacted:
Initiation fee fixed at two dollars and yearly dues one dollar. Fines for
the violation of the following rules, twenty-five cents for each offence:
Disrupting the decision of the Umpire. Refusing full obedience to the
Captain. For non-attendance. The National Constitution and By-Laws were
adopted, and the club adjourned until the 18th of April, 1867, to meet at
the store of G. H. Morgan & Co., Monroe st.
club has about thirty names signed on its roll, and the number of its
members is limited to fifty. There is every reason to believe that this
second attempt at organizing and maintaining a Base Ball Club will not
prove an abortive one. The club is composed of the best of material; its
members are young, vigorous, enthusiastic, and lovers of manly sports and
exercise; and they express a determination to live up to their
Constitution, By-Laws, and Rules, and use every endeavor to bring the
undertaking to a successful issue. The Board of Directors have already, as
we understand, set about the task of putting the grounds in readiness for
use. They have made a good selection of grounds, upon the hill east of the
city proper on what is known as Coit's addition.
wish the young men success in their present undertaking. We claim, for
them, among their numbers some of the best shots and most expert sportsmen
in the State, and we see no reason why they cannot excel in the practice
of our national game, and can give no reason for croakers entertaining the
opinion that there exists the shadow of the possibility of a failure in
CLUB MINUTES REVEAL DISSENSION
In July of 1867,
there was dissension within the club and the founding Board of Directors
was replaced ― from the club minutes,
on repository at the Grand Rapids Public Library. And since he was
Secretary of the organization, the beginning 45 pages
of the record book are written in L. C. Earle's hand. - D.B.
On July 2nd, 1867: "On motion old
Board of Directors discharged, and a new Board elected, consisting of
Joslin, Hubbard & White. Motion made and carried that any Com or Officer
failing to perform his duty, be discharged. On motion Club adj 'till
Thursday, July 18th, '67." Scan of
actual page Scan of Earle
L. C. Earle.
On July 18th, 1867: "On motion the
present Sec was discharged from office, G. W. Perkins was chosen by
acclamation to fill said vacancy."
G. W. Perkins
WHEN WE WERE BOYS
Grand Rapids Daily
Democrat, May 18, 1883,
In an excerpt from
an article titled "When They Were Boys" published in the local newspaper
there is an explanation. It seems the politics were serious! By the winter
of 1867, Lawrence Earle had moved on to New York City pursuing another
passion, his painting. - D.B.
The board of directors, for
non-performance of duty were dishonorably discharged July 15, (67), and
Fred Joslin, Will Hubbard and Charlie Mills(sic) were chosen in their
place. A resolution was also adopted punishing neglect of duty by any
officer with expulsion. On July 18 the secretary, L. C. Earle, was
discharged and G. W. Perkins chosen to his place, and Charlie Raton was
discharged for non-payment of dues.
Under the new regime the club
prospered and closed the season very creditably. A new election of
officers for the ensuing year were elected March 24, 1868, as follows:
President, John White; vice president, Fred C. Joslin; secretary, A. B.
Porter; directors, Henry Baars, N. B. Scribner, C. W. Mills. The meetings
through the summer were semi-occasions, and on Sept. 29, 1868, the last
recorded meeting was held. The season closed and the wonderful
organization never revived.
The Kent Baseball Club is Still