Baseball is America’s pasttime. But did you know that the Brits tried to take credit for inventing baseball? Cheeky bastards.
In the late 19th century and early 20th century, a dispute arose about the origins of baseball and whether it had been invented in the United States or formed as a variation of the British game of rounders. The theory that the sport was created in the U.S. was backed by Chicago Cubs president Albert Spalding and National League president Abraham G. Mills. In 1889, Mills gave a speech declaring that baseball was American, which he said was determined through “patriotism and research”; a crowd of about 300 people responding by chanting “No rounders!” |from Wikipedia
An investigative committee determined that baseball was, in fact, American: created by Union General Abner Doubleday. According to legend, the first game was held in Cooperstown, NY, on or around June 12, 1839. The baseball hall of fame is located there in commemoration of that blessed event.
Many historians have since disputed the claim that Big Abner fathered America’s pasttime. In fact, it is referred to on wikipedia as the “Doubleday Myth.” Talk about biased writing! I should try to have it changed to “Doubleday Controversy.”
Oh well. As they say, “Haters gonna hate.” At least I have Bud Selig on my side:
The myth has also received the backing of Major League Baseball commissioner Bud Selig, who said in 2010 that “I really believe that Abner Doubleday is the ‘Father of Baseball.'”
Happy 174th birthday, baseball!