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The Beginnings of Baseball in Wisconsin: 1860-1930


The history of baseball runs deep and wide in our state. Appleton’s first team, the Excelsiors, took the field in 1867 playing squads from Green Bay, Oshkosh, and Neenah among others. In Appleton and other cities across the state, amateur, company, semi-pro, and professional teams soon followed.

This exhibit, done in conjunction with the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers and historic societies from across Eastern Wisconsin, chronicles the development of the national past time: From when it was played in country fields to when it became a major source of city entertainment. The story of early local baseball also includes players who made it to the majors leagues, like William “Dummy” Hoy, the subject of a soon-to-released Hollywood movie.

However, the story of baseball in Wisconsin is more than just the story of players and teams, it is, in many ways, the story of Wisconsin itself.

The exhibit opens April 4, 2019 and runs through August 30, 2019.

Earlier Event: March 19
Hearthstone Annual Dinner and Meeting
Later Event: May 3
Summer on the Veranda