AMERICA'S NATIONAL GAME
Day, December 25th, 1862, a team from the 165th New York Volunteer Infantry, Duryea's Zouaves, engaged a picked nine from other Union regiments in that army. The game was witnessed by about 40,000 soldiers. It was played at Hilton Head, South Carolina, and was discussed for many a week thereafter. Among those participating in this game was Mr. A. G. Mills, of New York City, afterwards President of the National League, and to him I am indebted for the interesting incident.
Writing under date March 8th, 1909, Mr. N. E. Young, former President of the National League, says:
"In my native town in New York State the modern game of Base Ball had not been introduced prior to the breaking out of the Civil War. In my regiment we had a full cricket team, all of whom had played together at home, and our first match was arranged and played near White Oak Church, Va., in the early spring of 1863, against the Ninety-fifth Pennsylvania Regiment's team, hailing from Philadelphia. About this time (1863) a Base Ball club was organized in the Twenty-seventh New York Regiment, so we turned our attention to Base Ball, and kept it up as we had the chance until the close of the war. It was here that I played my first regular game of Base Ball."
In Collier's Weekly of May 8th, 1909, Will Irwin writes as follows:
"Then came the Civil War, and the place of the Boston boys was the ranks. The number of clubs in and about New York City dwindled from sixty-two in 1860 to twenty-eight in 1865. But the enlisted players took their game with them into the camps of Virginia and Tennessee. Whenever, in summer or fall, the Federal armies rested for a week, some one was sure to take a Base Ball out of his haversack and start a game. They played it on the Peninsula while the Army of the Potomac waited for the latest incompetent general to replace the last incompetent general. They played it before Fort Fisher, dropping one game mid-innings to fall in and run to the firing line. They played it in Confederate prisons, where they taught it to their captors. The Ohio, Illinois, Wisconsin and Indiana regiments turned out to watch and remained to learn. A young cricketer from Amsterdam, New York, who had enlisted in the ranks,