Hello Jayesh - I read the NPR article on wicket ball. I live in westfield ma (western part of state near springfield) and I wrote a book about baseball history in westfield ma and dedicated an entire chapter to wicket ball as it was the game of choice in this area. In fact one particular match was quite controversial. This was published in 2004 and at that time little to nothing was known about the game. I believe my one chapter was the only dedicated source at the time.
Apologies for the late reply, have not been on tumblr lately. Wish I had made contact with you before, could have used more Wicket material. If you have provided John with the info then I should have that same info too. There is a ‘Pops’ Maxfield who does vintage baseball recreation in CT, he may know Brian Sheehy. Where can I find your book?
I am nearing the finish line with my book, here is the hi-res cover image for promotional purposes supplied by CreateSpace. If I don’t come up with any more corrections then I can list it on Amazon in a couple of weeks! Partial blank pages in the book are still a bother, can’t seem to let it go. If I do decide to go with the changes, it can be another 4 weeks or so, depending on how good or bad they do.
I came across this, shall I say, odd ad from the 1900s for Florida Oranges depicting a cricket batsman. The ball looks ‘orange’, but besides that, I don’t see anything else to do with oranges or Cricket for that matter. Was there really a brand, haven’t been able to find much on this. To be honest, I have not looked further south where I may be able to get some answers.
Bought one label as a novelty, looks great though.
When London was the watering hole for the American wealthy in the eighteenth century, many rich families from New England, Virginia and Carolinas found themselves in this vibrant city. Their offspring’s were placed in well to do schools and guided them to the right careers and trade with the London elite. Benjamin West, an Anglo American artist well-known for his large scale historical paintings, captured a glimpse of this privileged life during the heyday of the Britain’s American Empire, and also a time of growing political rift over Britain’s right to tax the colonies.
“The Cricketers” also known as “Ralph Izard and his Friends” (1764) shows five youths resting after a game of Cricket. It seems there is a disagreement over the identity of the youths but are generally identified from left to right as Ralph Wormeley V from Virginia, brothers James and Andrew Allen of Philadelphia, Ralph Izard and Arthur Middleton from S. Carolina.
The American Revolutionary War (1775-1783) changed their fortunes and showed where their loyalty lay, Andrew Allen fought in the British Army and had to flee to London after his property was confiscated in Philadelphia and younger brother retired to the country during the war opposing the independence. Ralph Izard had stayed behind in London after his schooling but left for Paris in protest in 1776 and returned to South Carolina and was elected to the Continental Congress. Arthur Middleton was one of the 56 signatories for the Declaration of Independence and also a member of the Continental Congress. He was a British prisoner of war during 1780-81. Ralph Wormeley was staunchly loyal to England, he was arrested and confined to family property in Berkley County (now West Virginia) for several years.
There are presumably 2 copies, one maybe in England and the other one is with the Brook Club, a private Men’s only club in New York city. For my book, I had to settle for a B&W image provided by the Smithsonian, the club, as you can imagine, was aloof.
Who says you can’t drink & play, Johnnie did!
Besides these later advertisements, in 1908 there were a set of 6 Johnnie Walker prints made by Tom Brown depicting different sports, it’s highly collectible now. Cricket appeared in a lot of ads promoting smoking and drinking - have not came across one lately…how things have changed!
The way things are going the 1867 declaration that was made then by the 1st Prime Minister, Sir. John. A. Macdonald is coming true again. Saw a Twitter feed yesterday & coverage by a local TV station in Toronto talking about the shortage of Cricket grounds! Please come down and teach your Yankee neighbors about Cricket again, still don’t know how they took a liking to the ‘other' English game - base ball - yes, it's of English stock, but don't tell that to a die hard fan, you might not get the reaction you expect.
Recently, at an antique fair I mentioned this to a dealer & he stopped me and said, ‘don’t say that, we still believe in Abner and that’s not going to change’!
Here is a little excerpt from my book on Canada’s Cricket beginnings.
The earliest reference to Canadian Cricket is of a match played at Île Ste-Hélène in the Province of Quebec in 1785 on the site where the Montreal Exposition buildings now stand. It is generally believed that the game was introduced into the country by British soldiers following the historic battle at the Plains of Abraham near Quebec City, between the armies of General Wolfe and General Montcalm in 1759. However, Donald King, ex-executive Secretary of Canada Cricket Association provides a more conservative timeline as to the beginnings of the game, placing it around 1795.
“After tea we took a walk with Mr. Lilly to a place they call Vauxhall. They have a very good assembly room and a pretty good garden. The Canadians were playing at bowls and cricket.”
Another early reference comes from an entry in the diary of Robert Hunter, Jr. a twenty-year-old, son of a Scottish merchant from London who had come in 1785-1786 to collect overdue debts of his father’s mercantile firm. He kept a diary of his travels and of business and adventure that took him to Canada, New York, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, and South Carolina.
Canadian Cricket has its roots in the Upper Canada region from the town of York (Toronto) in Ontario province. A young English schoolmaster and a publisher at the Toronto Herald, George A. Barber encouraged the game in the early nineteenth century and who is today considered the father of Canadian cricket. In 1827 he helped in formation of the Toronto Cricket Club and was instrumental in starting the historic series between the Club and Upper Canada College in 1836.
Cricket was part of the fabric of American culture at the turn of the century. Not only was it played all over the country but it also permeated everyday life and business saw its’ reach and advertised its product using Cricket images. This is one of may such images used by different companies. The first one - Soapine is from Providence, Rhode Island and the second is for a shoe company with ‘Nox-Em-All’ as their trademark. The third one is my favorite - the worms are bowled out with Vermisine!