Kent Base Ball Club
L. C. Earle, Secretary
Grand Rapids Daily Eagle,
April 6, 1867
KENT BASE BALL CLUB
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.
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 following results:
President.―S. K. Pierce
Secretary.―L. C. Earle
S. Earle, L. Withey, John W. Avery
following business was then transacted:
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 the enterprise."
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.
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
July 18th, 1867: "On motion the present Sec was discharged from office,
G. W. Perkins was chosen by acclamation to fill said vacancy."
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.
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.
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
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