Beachville, OntarioName: Beachville & Zorra Amateur Teams – First Recorded Baseball Game, June 4, 1838

Induction: June 4,1988

Primary Position: Team

Year Played: 1838

 

On June 4, 1838, a year before Abner Doubleday was credited with inventing baseball in Cooperstown, N.Y., two teams from Oxford and Zorra townships did battle in Beachville, Ontario in what’s now recognized as the first documented game in North American history. It was Dr. Adam Ford, a former resident of St. Marys, Ont., now home to the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame, who later recounted details of this contest in a letter published in the May 5, 1886 issue of Sporting Life magazine.

 

Living in Denver, Colo., when he penned his recollections, Ford recalls that the match was played on a square field in a pasture. The competition between Beachville and Zorra featured five bases, fair and foul balls, players employing a hand hewn stick as a bat and a ball made of twisted yarn and covered with calf skin. The Beachville District Historical Society has researched Ford’s account and has concluded that the information in his letter is authentic.

 

The following are the names of the players on the Beachville and Zorra teams that participated in the historic game:

 

George Burdick                                              Harry Karn

Almon Burch                                                  Peter Karn

Gordon Cook                                                  Reuben Martin

Henry Cruttendon                                           Edward McNames

William Dodge                                                Nathaniel McNames

Old Ned Dolson                                             Neil McTaggart

William Ford                                                   James Piper

William Harrington                                         Henry Taylor

William Hutchinson                                        I. Van Alstine

Adam Karn                                                     Abel Williams

Daniel Karn                                                     John Williams