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World War I Newsbeat

Friday, December 29, 2017

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 12-29-2017

Richmond [Indiana] Palladium, December 29, 1917:

Baseball Players Sought by British

For grenade throwing on the menaced west front in France baseball players are wanted by the Chicago office of the British-Canadian recruiting mission.
...
“Baseball players can do better at grenade throwing than other men, of course,” said a bulletin of the recruiting mission. “They have the strength of arm necessary to throw far and accurately.

Cricket bowlers probably wouldn’t work as well. Bouncing a grenade at your enemy seems like a terrible idea.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: December 29, 2017 at 10:09 AM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, world war i

Monday, November 27, 2017

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 11-27-2017

New York Tribune, November 27, 1917:

Secretary John B. Foster of the Giants may be able to start a smart baseball man into a profitable business. John has been forced to turn down two offers which would have given play to his executive abilities. Both the British and French governments were anxious for him to look over the field in those countries with a view to opening professional baseball leagues. Baseball, it seems, is catching on abroad.

I think that, if the British and French governments had approached me in 1917 about baseball, my immediate response would have been something like “Dude, don’t you have more important things to worry about right now?”

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: November 27, 2017 at 10:42 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, international, world war i

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 9-21-2017

Bismarck Tribune, September 21, 1917:

The National baseball commission today announced that the world’s series would open on the grounds of the Chicago Americans, October 6, with the second game played there Sunday, October 7.
...
Soldiers now in France and also those who are preparing to fight for liberty, were remembered by the commission. Announcement was made that a 1,000 word story would be cabled to France after each game for the benefit of the soldiers there…

President Wilson and Generals Barry, Carter, Bell and McCain will be invited to attend the series.

“No, that’s cool, you guys have fun at the World Series. Enjoy yourselves. We’ll just hang out here in the trenches getting blown up.”

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: September 21, 2017 at 08:21 AM | 20 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, world war i

Monday, September 11, 2017

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 9-11-2017

Butte Daily Post, September 11, 1917:

BRITISH FIND NOT A LITTLE AMUSEMENT IN AMERICAN GAME

To the average American fan his reading accounts of the game in British papers will be truly interesting. In brief, one of the London contemporaries has termed the sport “Merry Hulla-Ballo.” Thus far the foreign critics have not fully grasped the common expression of “That’s the boy.”
...
While Stanley, the Canadian twirler, was displaying an effective delivery, the fans complained that he was throwing too fast to follow the ball. The Britishers spoke of the extra-base clouts as being very “big” hitting and they were particularly interested in the gloves worn by the players.

Foul balls must have blown their minds.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: September 11, 2017 at 11:07 AM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, world war i

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 8-31-2017

Butte Daily Post, August 31, 1917:

“Sammies” being American soldiers in World War I.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: August 31, 2017 at 09:53 AM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, world war i

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 8-17-2017

Lake County [Indiana] Times, August 17, 1917:

One of the features of the trips taken by the White Sox this year has been their singing of “The Star Spangled Banner.” After marching around the field under the sirection of Sergeant W.S. Smiley they would line up before the stand and sing two verses of the anthem.
...
One of the Sox players told of their first rehearsal. “Rowland got us together in the clubhouse and asked if any of us knew the words of ‘The Star-Spangled Banner’,” he said. “There were only three—Benz, Scott and Weaver. The rest knew only short snatches.

“Rowland then told us to sing the two verses as well as we could and those who didn’t know the words could make a bluff until they learned them by singing ‘Hum-hum-hum’.”

“After our first appearance Gandil came into the clubhouse after the game and approached Rowland. ‘I can’t help it, boss,’ he said. ‘I’m a hum-hum-hummer.’”

I think just about everybody would be a hum-hum-hummer on the second verse these days.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: August 17, 2017 at 10:12 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, world war i

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 8-16-2017

Tucumcari News, August 16, 1917:

For the present it may be all right that baseball continue. At least it is not mandatory that it cease…but it may be just as well to suggest to the American people that professional baseball is likely to be an incongruity next year.

An American newspaper will sacrifice a great deal of self-respect if it has to print, or does print, box scores and casualty lists in the same issue, says Chicago Tribune.

Baseball already is getting on the nerves of a great many people who know that catastrophic times are ahead or who fear that they may be ahead.

It is fiddling while Rome is burning.

I guess people got used to it.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: August 16, 2017 at 10:01 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, world war i

Monday, August 07, 2017

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 8-7-2017

Pittsburgh Gazette Times, August 7, 1917:

“The proposal to sent baseball players to France at the end of the season to entertain soldiers is the most absurd thing I ever heard of.”

This is the way President John K. Tener of the National League felt about it today when told an offer had been made to finance such an expedition.

“The idea of sending a bunch of big huskies over there with their expenses all paid to perform for the benefit of men who are ready to sacrifice their lives for their country is exceedingly repulsive to me. I cannot understand what the man who made the offer could have been thinking of.”

Jeez, don’t tell Tener about the USO.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: August 07, 2017 at 09:51 AM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, world war i

Wednesday, August 02, 2017

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 8-2-2017

Pittsburgh Press, August 2, 1917:

Dr. Richard C. Hoblitzel, first baseman of the Boston American League baseball team, has volunteered and undergone examination for a commission in the dental reserve corps, it was announced today. Dr. Hoblitzel said he was uncertain when he was likely to be called.

Just your everyday “quality starting first baseman in his late 20s going to France to be a military dentist” story.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: August 02, 2017 at 09:36 AM | 30 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, world war i

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 7-27-2017

Pittsburgh Press, July 27, 1917:

A new use for baseball slang has been found. The story is told by a writer describing the experiences of Americans inside the German lines…It was necessary that one American having knowledge of [the news] should acquaint another with what was going on, but the Germans were on watch, listening for every word.
...
[An American said to another:] “Nix on any of these spangled delicatessens (German officers) getting wise, but the umpire-in-chief has chased Heinie out of the lot for his rough work.

(The German ambassador at Washington has been handed his papers by President Wilson.)

“I get you. Are they going to play ball?”

(Are they going to war?)

“Sure, home team has gone to bat with all its stars in the game.”
“What’s the score?”
“Don’t know yet, but the other guys are a lot of bushers, tried to steal second with the bases full.”

Spangled delicatessens?

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: July 27, 2017 at 09:58 AM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, world war i

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 7-26-2017

Pittsburgh Press, July 26, 1917:

As far as is known, Pitcher John Miljus of the Brooklyn club is the first major leaguer to be called to the colors via the draft route. Miljus…was ordered yesterday to present himself for examination tomorrow morning.

Strange that the first big leaguer to be drafted to serve in WWI would be known as “The Big Serb”.

In other news on the same page of the Pittsburgh Press, White Sox first baseman Chick Gandil has filed bankruptcy. I think I know a way Gandil can supplement his salary, but Charlie Comiskey might not like it.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: July 26, 2017 at 10:06 AM | 19 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, world war i

 

 

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