Baseball Magazine

This Day in Baseball: Mark Twain’s Umbrella

By Precious Sanders @pdsanders99

On May 18, 1875, writer Samuel Clemens (a.k.a. Mark Twain) attended a game between the Boston Red Stockings and the Hartford Dark Blues.  A record crowd of 10,000 fans attended the match-up between the two teams, both undefeated up to this point in the season.  The visiting Red Stockings defeated the Dark Blues, 10-5, led by captain and pitcher, Albert Goodwill “Al” Spalding.

During the game, a young boy snagged an umbrella belonging to Clemens when he stood up to root for the home team.  A couple days later, Clemens published the following notice in the Hartford Courant newspaper:

To the Public

TWO HUNDRED & FIVE DOLLARS REWARD–At the great baseball match on Tuesday, while I was engaged in hurrahing, a small boy walked off with an English-made brown silk UMBRELLA belonging to me, & forgot to bring it back. I will pay $5 for the return of that umbrella in good condition to my house on Farmington avenue. I do not want the boy (in an active state) but will pay two hundred dollars for his remains.
Samuel L. Clemens.

Mark_Twain

Mark Twain (Library of Congress)


This day in baseball: Mark Twain’s umbrella This day in baseball: Mark Twain’s umbrella This day in baseball: Mark Twain’s umbrella

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