Danny McClellan (SEAMHEADS.COM)

Dan McClellan

This article was written by Phil Williams

Danny McClellan (SEAMHEADS.COM)Although sometimes overshadowed by Andrew “Rube” Foster, lefthander Dan McClellan starred as one of the finest African-American pitchers during the twentieth century’s first decade. With his peak coming with the Cuban X Giants from 1900 to 1904, then the Philadelphia Giants from 1905 to 1910, he may have won 300 games over his career. McClellan also played the outfield with these famed independent teams, often appearing in the heart of the batting order.

Daniel J. McClellan was born on June 11, 1878, in Norfolk, Virginia. He was the first of Daniel and Margaret (nee Wright) McClellan’s five children. His father was born in nearby Princess Anne County, and his mother was also a Virginia native. Both were likely born into slavery.1 Daniel Sr. worked as a shoemaker.

As early as 1897, McClellan pitched for the Norfolk Red Stockings. On May 24, in a rain-shortened five-inning affair, “the feature was the pitching of Dan McClellan, who struck out nine men.”2 Formed in 1878, the Red Stockings were, by the turn of the century, one of only five professional African-American teams.3 John McClellan, possibly an older cousin, caught for the team.4 Dan can be found pitching with the squad through 1899.5

Cuban X-Giants owner Edward B. Lamar recruited the up-and-coming McClellan sometime before the team departed for Havana early in 1900, to play several native Cuban teams. The newcomer moved into the starting rotation during that trip, picking up at least two wins against the local teams.6 After winning 12 of 15 games in Cuba, the X-Giants arrived back in New York City on April 14. The next day, McClellan struggled in the box, allowing 12 hits against the West New York Field Club in Weehawken, but his team rallied for a 6-4 victory.7

From Weehawken, the X-Giants’ season progressed through Philadelphia, New England, western Pennsylvania, Chicago, Atlantic City, Wilmington, Chester, and assorted hamlets. Their opposition consisted of semipro and town teams, with a sprinkling of minor-league, college, and other independent black teams. The team later claimed a 120-31 record in 1900.8 This success rate is likely inflated. Box scores for 57 games are readily available through present-day newspaper databases and indicate a 35-20-2 record.9 Yet the squad likely played 150 games. The economic viability of the era’s independent African-American teams required they pick up games almost every day of an extended season. As they were not recognized as professional, they skirted the “blue laws” prohibiting major-league teams from playing on the sabbath and took advantage of large Sunday crowds.10

The X-Giants were arguably the finest black team at the turn of the century. Bill Monroe, who McClellan later proclaimed the best ballplayer he ever played with, typically played shortstop and led off.11 Veterans Big Bill Smith, Will Jackson, and Robert Jordan followed in the order. Stocky Clarence Williams caught a four-man rotation of McClellan, John Nelson, Kid Carter, and James Robinson. From the partial 57-game record, McClellan went 8-7.12 Like most of his teammates, he confidently played multiple positions. From 1900 to 1903, when not pitching, McClellan played the outfield about two-thirds of the time.  

The X-Giants’ success continued over the next three seasons. From readily-available box scores, limited records of 56-27-3 in 1901, 50-27 in 1902, and 64-30-1 in 1903 emerge. McClellan, from this partial accounting, went 11-7-1 in 1901, 15-7 in 1902, and 16-8 in 1903.13

Their grueling schedule produced hiccups. Arriving in Freeland, Pennsylvania, on June 2, 1901, the X-Giants were informed that the local team didn’t have a pitcher. McClellan was lent to the opposition, who made eight errors behind him in their 8-4 loss.14 That September, in an experimental night game in northeast Philadelphia, McClellan defeated the locals, 10-6. “The ball used was about twice the size of the regulation sphere, being soft and elastic, and when swatted by the batsmen it gave forth a sound very similar to that of an overripe cantaloupe hurled by a mischievous boy at an old man’s high hat.”15 In June 1902, after a game in Dover “lasted so long that the last train was missed,” the X-Giants waited in vain for a freight that might accommodate them, then caught minimal sleep “on trunks and baggage trucks.” The next morning, the first train out was several hours late. The team finally arrived in Wilmington for the next day’s game. McClellan four-hit the opposition and won, 6-2.16

Carter and Nelson joined the upstart Philadelphia Giants prior to the 1902 campaign and, until Lamar recruited Rube Foster midway through the 1903 season, the X-Giants mostly employed a three-man rotation of McClellan, Robinson and Ed Wilson. During this stretch, McClellan developed a reputation as “the best colored pitcher in the country.”17 Over eight days in August 1902, he shut out Atlantic City, Hoboken, and Camden.18 On June 17, 1903, he pitched a perfect game against York’s Penn Park squad.19

In September 1903, the X-Giants battled the Philadelphia Giants for “the colored baseball championship of the world.”20 Foster had, by this time, emerged as the X-Giants’ ace. The Texan won the series opener, on September 12, at the Philadelphia Athletics’ Columbia Park. The next day, McClellan pitched both ends of a doubleheader in Ridgewood, New Jersey, in front of 3,000 fans. In the morning game, he allowed two hits and cruised to an 8-1 victory. Then he lost the afternoon affair, 5-2. Foster returned to win the fourth game, but on September 15, Carter outdueled McClellan, 3-0. Foster then won the final two games, as the “Cubes” dismissed the “Phillies” in seven games.21

Foster joined the Philadelphia Giants before the 1904 campaign. The X-Giants remained an elite unit, with readily-available box scores yielding a partial 47-24 record for the year. Yet McClellan’s playing time diminished. From this partial accounting, he went 7-4.22 When not pitching, he played the outfield in about a third of these games.

In a heralded series with the Philadelphia Giants late that summer, McClellan went against Foster in the first game. The “Phillies” drove him from the box, and Foster fanned 18 on the way to an 8-4 victory. The “Cubes” took the second game behind Harry Buckner. An over-flow crowd of 5,000 packed Atlantic City’s Inlet Park to witness the final match on September 3. McClellan went the distance, allowing only one earned run. But Foster two-hit his ex-teammates, and the “Phillies” clinched the series with a 4-2 victory.23

Just as his X-Giants career began with an extended series in Cuba in early 1900, his stay with the team concluded with a nine-game set there in the fall of 1904. McClellan bested José Muñoz twice in the series. After returning to the states, he joined H. Walter Schlichter’s Philadelphia Giants.

McClellan, Foster, and rookie Emmett Bowman formed a powerful three-man rotation. The three also filled outfield roles, alongside center fielder Pete Hill. Former X-Giants comprised the infield: Bill Monroe at third, Grant “Home Run” Johnson at shortstop, Charlie Grant at second, and player-manager Sol White or utility man Harry “Mike” Moore at first. Pete Booker and Tom Washington caught.

Sol White claimed his Giants built a 134-21-3 record in 1905. Baseball historian Phil S. Dixon, in his exhaustive study of the team, has verified a 128-23-3 record (including a 16-3 mark against minor-league squads). Foster compiled a 37-5 record, Bowman 35-8, and McClellan 32-7. Dixon documents McClellan with 345 innings pitched, approximately 190 strikeouts, 50 walks, and only 38 extra-base hits (with just one home run) allowed.24 Additionally, once the Giants’ campaign ended, McClellan (along with Foster and Hill) joined another X-Giants Cuban tour. There he picked up another victory, again at Muñoz’s expense.

“At bat,” Dixon adds, “McClellan was known to be the best left-handed-hitting pitcher in baseball.”25 Among contemporary major-league southpaws, Al Orth may have been the best hitter: he batted .266 in 452 games from 1900 to 1909.26 Box scores suggest McClellan averaged over a hit per game over his career. He may well have out-hit Orth.

As a ballplayer, McClellan is a cipher, perhaps best defined by who he wasn’t. Unlike Rube Foster, contemporary reports didn’t suggest he was a power pitcher. Instead, McClellan was a “clever pitcher,” possessing “both speed and a variety of twisters,” who “seemed to know just where to put them.”27 Like most pitchers in this era, black or white, he likely felt comfortable pitching to contact. An observer noted in 1900, “The Cuban X-Giants play a game in which they rely almost entirely upon their fielders, and such is the support they give their pitchers that it is almost impossible to get a safe hit.”28

At the plate, he did not possess the power of “Home Run” Johnson or the speed of Bill Monroe or Charlie Grant. Box scores suggest McClellan most often batted sixth in the Giants’ batting order in 1905. He is sometimes listed as standing 5-foot-5 and weighing 168. Yet team photographs of that era’s Philadelphia Giants sometimes suggest McClellan was of a more average height, perhaps the same as 5-foot-9 Spottswood Poles.29

He didn’t exhibit Foster’s bravado, or Monroe’s showmanship. In 1909, while coaching first base during a game in Atlantic City he and Bill Duggleby became involved in a heated argument that led to the two exchanging blows.30 Yet, besides this incident, McClellan’s professionalism did not waver. Years later, sportswriters labelled him “amiable and affable” and “a gentleman and a straight-shooter.”31

The Giants remained a juggernaut in 1906, with box scores yielding a limited 61-24-1 record. Ed Wilson joined Bowman, Foster, and McClellan in the rotation. McClellan achieved a (partial) record of 15-7.32 That October, after the American League season ended, Connie Mack’s barnstorming Philadelphia Athletics stepped over the color line to meet the Giants for a two-game set. In Chester on October 12, “over a thousand people” endured “the intense cold” to watch Eddie Plank outduel Bowman through eight innings, and claim a 4-1 lead. The Giants rallied in the top of the ninth to tie the match, but the Athletics scored in the bottom of the frame to walk off with a 5-4 victory.33

In Camden the next day, a meeting between Foster and Rube Waddell was initially promised: “the two greatest pitchers of their color living.”34 McClellan instead took the assignment. “Despite the fact that the prices of admission had been doubled, the largest crowd of the season turned out,” and ropes stretched along the outfield to accommodate the fans.35 Topsy Hartsel led off the game with a double, Harry Davis and Chief Bender added singles, but a “fast double play” allowed McClellan to escape with only one run surrendered.36 The Mackmen pushed across an unearned run in the fifth, then doubles from Waddell and Socks Seybold in the sixth helped to add three more runs. Harry Buckner replaced McClellan in the seventh.  Waddell, meanwhile, was masterful: striking out 18, allowing only two hits, and shutting out the Giants, 5-0.

Although Foster and Monroe departed before the 1907 season, the Giants added two talented youngsters: catcher Bruce Petway and shortstop John Henry Lloyd. Bowman, Ed Wilson, and McClellan formed the nucleus of the staff. Box scores reveal a partial 32-10 record for the squad, and a 10-1 record for McClellan.37 He regularly played the outfield when not pitching, and often batted third in the order, sandwiched between Hill and Lloyd. The “Phillies” easily took the flag in the inaugural season of the short-lived National Association of Colored Baseball Clubs. In one such league game in front of “three thousand fans who did not draw the color line,” McClellan bested the Brooklyn Royal Giants on July 28, 5-1.38

The Philadelphia Giants’ fortunes soon faded. Present-day box scores indicate partial records of 39-24 in 1908, 25-25-1 in 1909, and 22-30 in 1910. Yet McClellan remained a winning pitcher; limited data indicates he went 7-3 in 1908, 8-3 in 1909, and 7-4 in 1910.39 He continued to play the outfield (or, increasingly, first base) on a regular basis, and bat second or third in the order.

McClellan pitched briefly for the Brooklyn Royal Giants in April 1910 before again joining the “Phillies.”40 As the 1911 season dawned, he departed Philadelphia for good, joining the newly formed New York Lincoln Giants, managed by Sol White. Readily-available box scores reveal a partial 29-10-1 record for the team, and a 6-3 mark for McClellan.41 Rookie Dick Redding emerged as the staff workhorse, but McClellan often faced the Lincolns’ most notable opponents. On September 4, in front of 12,000 fans at New York’s Hilltop Park, McClellan bested Frank Wickware and the Chicago American Giants, 6-4.42 Against Walter Johnson’s All-Leaguers on Sunday, October 15, McClellan fanned nine. But the Big Train struck out 14 and beat the Giants, 5-3.43 Two weeks later, McClellan went against Eddie Plank and his barnstorming team. After six innings, with the score tied 2-2, Harry Buckner relieved McClellan. Plank singled in the winning run in the ninth and claimed a 3-2 victory.44

After one season with the Lincolns, McClellan joined Dick Cogan’s Paterson Smart Set. A final memorable outing resulted. On Sunday, May 26, 1912, the Smart Set hosted the New York Giants in front of “2,000 fans that filled every nook and corner of space in both the grand stand and bleachers” of Paterson’s Olympic Park.45 The reigning NL champs pushed across the game’s first run in the second after McClellan walked Moose McCormick and yielded a double to Art Fletcher. In the top of the sixth, after Judy Gans slammed a double off the fence and Bill Land reached on Fletcher’s error, “McClellan then brought the crowd to its feet with a smash to deep center for three bases.”46 The teams each added a run in the seventh, and New York added another in the eighth to tie the match at 3-3. The Giants, with Wilbert Robinson managing the team in John McGraw’s absence, beefed frequently about the umpire’s calls. In the top of the tenth, contending that “an old ball was thrown into the box” for McClellan to use – instead of the “new” one provided to (then considerably soiled by) Giants starter Louis Drucke the inning before – Robinson called his team in.47 As “the Giants were hissed off the field” by the crowd, the umpire forfeited the game to Paterson.48

In 1906 McClellan married fellow Virginia native Alberta Reed. Over the next two decades, the couple raised four sons and three daughters. Although McClellan twirled sporadically with Philadelphia-area teams after the Smart Set folded in 1913, it seems he spent the remainder of the decade working as a laborer in the city.49

McClellan’s career pitching record is ultimately a matter of guesswork. Norfolk newspapers were especially stingy in their coverage of black baseball, but by 1899 his work with the Red Stockings had attracted national attention.50 If he pitched in their starting rotation for three years – and one adds his five years with the Cuban X-Giants, six with the Philadelphia Giants, and one with the Lincoln Giants – then McClellan spent 15 seasons as a staff mainstay with the era’s leading independent black teams. As readily-available box scores suggest only part of the lengthy barnstorming seasons these teams played, it seems entirely possible he averaged twenty victories from 1897 through 1911 and accumulated 300 victories over his career.

In 1920 McClellan took over the managerial reins of the Philadelphia-based Madison Stars. Except for an unsuccessful stint in 1925 leading the Eastern Colored League’s Wilmington Giants, he spent the next two decades skippering African American minor-league teams like the Stars.51 Most notably, after his Wilmington stint, McClellan led a new iteration of the Philadelphia Giants. The lessons from his barnstorming years served him well. He ably kept the squad afloat during the Great Depression, with most of their games taking place in New England.52 Yet, by the 1940 census, it seems both his baseball career and marriage had ended: he is in Brooklyn, living alone as a boarder and working as a railroad porter. Alberta died in 1949, her death certificate indicating her marital status as separated.53

“The writer saw them, and believe us they were good,” sportswriter Ed Hughes said of the 1905 Philadelphia Giants a generation later.54 Throughout the 1920s, McClellan surfaced in all-time lists of African-American ballplayers. In 1925, William E. Clark’s “Old Timer” selected a staff of Joe Williams, Rube Foster, Bill Lindsay, Bullet Rogan, McClellan, and Nip Winters.55 Four years later, James Roberts placed Williams, Foster, Dizzy Dismukes, John Donaldson, and Kid Carter on his first tier of twirlers, and Dick Redding, José Mendez, Bill Gatewood, McClellan, and Steel Arm Johnny Taylor on his second.56

The famed 1952 Pittsburgh Courier “Dream Team” covered “a span of forty-two playing years … from 1910 until the present!”57 As such, decades of pioneering African-American ballplayers were not given full credit. Yet McClellan did make this team as a coach, a tribute to the devotion he brought to a sport that did not fully accommodate his talents or determination.

A decade later, on March 10, 1962, Daniel McClellan died of a heart attack in Philadelphia. He rests in Eden Cemetery, a historic African-American cemetery located in Collingdale, Pennsylvania. His grave was unmarked until 2019, when a headstone commissioned by SABR’s Negro Leagues Baseball Grave Marker project was set in place.



This biography was reviewed by Norman Macht and fact-checked by Alan Cohen.



In addition to the sources noted in this biography, the author also accessed McClellan’s file from the National Baseball Hall of Fame, the Biographical Encyclopedia of the Negro Baseball Leagues, and the following sites:









1 Norfolk did have a sizeable free black population, with 1,036 of the city’s 4,320 blacks with this status in 1860. If McClellan’s parents did live in the city, it is possible they were free. However, one notable study does not mention any free blacks with the surname ‘McClellan’ or ‘Wright’ in its text or tables. See Tommy L. Bogger, Free Blacks in Norfolk, Virginia, 1790-1860: The Darker Side of Freedom (Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia, 1997).

2 Norfolk Virginian, May 25, 1897.

3 “The Red Stockings Team,” Virginian Pilot, March 23, 1899; Robert Peterson, Only the Ball Was White: A History of Legendary Black Players and All-Black Professional Teams (New York: Oxford University Press, 1970): 59.

4 “The Red Stockings Reorganized,” Virginian Pilot, March 4, 1899. John McClellan, race as “black,” is listed in the 1900 census as 29 years old and living as a boarder in Rosa Miller’s Norfolk household. Danny’s brothers, per the same census, were Charlie, Joshua, and David.

5 “The ‘Red Stockings’ Win,” Virginian Pilot, May 31, 1899.

6 For the X Giants’ Cuban series, see “American Series (Black Teams in Cuba),” Center for Negro League Baseball Research, https://tinyurl.com/y7fdo3lx, accessed August 7, 2018. For McClellan’s participation, see “Cuban Giants, 7; San Francisco, 3,” Chicago Tribune, March 6, 1900; “Base Ball Bulletin,” Waterbury Evening Democrat, March 31, 1900.

7 “Cuban X Giants Victorious,” New York Tribune, April 16, 1900.

8 “Today’s Game at Penn Park, York (Pennsylvania) Daily, June 17, 1902.

9 As the author did not document line scores – with decisions, scores by innings, and batteries – beyond McClellan, they are excluded from this accounting. 18 such line scores, for his five years with the X-Giants, were found for McClellan. His record from these games was 15-3.

10 For an overview of an elite African American team’s competition and scheduling in this era, see Phil S. Dixon, Phil Dixon’s American Baseball Chronicles – Great Teams: The 1905 Philadelphia Giants Volume III (Xlibris, 2010): 16-35.

11 W. Rollo Wilson, “Sports Shots,” Pittsburgh Courier, April 11, 1931.

12 Wins: 3/2 vs San Francisco (Cuba), 4/15 vs West New York, 5/12 vs North Adams, 5/15 vs Vermont Academy, 7/21 vs P.R.R.Y.M.C.A., 7/27 vs Atlantic City, 8/11 vs Frankford A.A., 8/17 vs Atlantic City.

13 Wins (1901): 5/17 vs Chester, 5/22 vs Allentown, 6/12 vs Harrisburg A.C., 6/18 vs Norristown, 7/17 vs Atlantic City, 7/25 vs Atlantic City, 8/22 vs Frankford, 8/30 vs Atlantic City, 9/14 vs Roxborough, 9/20 vs Wilmington, 9/27 vs Wilmington. Wins (1902): 4/20 vs Hoboken, 5/5 vs Steelton, 5/10 vs Frankford, 5/19 vs Trenton YMCA, 6/11 vs East Liverpool, 6/23 vs Trenton YMCA, 6/26 vs Wilmington, 7/4 vs Atlantic City, 7/18 vs Chester, 8/10 vs Hoboken, 8/14 vs Camden, 8/29 vs Chester, 9/6 vs Atlantic City, 9/11 vs Burnham, 9/20 vs Monesson. Wins (1903): 4/28 vs Wilmington A.A., 5/12 vs Wilmington, 5/14 vs Chester, 5/18 vs Lebanon, 6/10 vs East Liverpool YMCA, 6/26 vs Lebanon, 7/3 vs Atlantic City, 7/8 vs Lebanon, 7/12 vs Hoboken, 7/17 vs Penn Park, 8/1 vs Atlantic City, 8/5 vs Atlantic City, 8/16 vs Perth Amboy, 8/23 vs Hoboken, 9/3 vs Atlantic City, 9/13 vs Philadelphia Giants.

14 Giants Win the Game, Freeland (Pennsylvania) Tribune, June 3, 1901.

15 “X-Giants Win Under Glare of Electric Lights,” Philadelphia Inquirer, August 23, 1901.

16 “Cuban X-Giants by Timely Hitting Landed a Victory,” Wilmington Morning News, June 27, 1902.

17 “Cuban X Giants Win a Good Game,” Poughkeepsie Eagle, July 29, 1902.

18 “Sunday’s Game in Hoboken,” Jersey Journal, August 8, 1902; “Hoboken Team Again Defeated,” Jersey Journal, August 11, 1902; “X Giants Defeat Camden,” Philadelphia Inquirer, August 15, 1902.

19 “Penn Park Again Blanked,” York Daily, July 18, 1903. The Penn Park squad that day featured Bill Clay, who had played several games with the Phillies the season before. At least three others – outfielder Harry Billet, catcher Joe Smith, and pitcher Charles Hilbert – built sustained minor-league careers.

20 “Cuban X-Giants Win First Game,” Philadelphia Inquirer, September 13, 1903.

21 For contemporary accounts of McClellan’s pitching in the series, see Philadelphia Item, September 14, 1903; “X Giants Shut Out,” Philadelphia Inquirer, September 16, 1903.

22 Wins (1904): 4/30 vs Trenton, 5/7 vs Penn Park, 5/7 vs Frankford, 6/26 vs Hoboken, 7/8 vs Keyport, 8/6 vs Trenton YMCA, 8/21 vs Hoboken, 8/28 vs All-Cubans, 10/20 vs Carmelita, 10/26 vs Habana.

23 “Phila. Giants Trim Cuban X-Giants, Foster Fanning 18 Men at the Plate,” Philadelphia Inquirer, September 2, 1904; Philadelphia Item, September 3, 1904; Philadelphia Item, September 6, 1904.

24 Dixon, The 1905 Philadelphia Giants Volume III: 22-26, 260-261, 268-276.

25 Ibid., 261.

26 Per Baseball-Reference’s play index.

27 “Issue Will Depend on Pitchers,” Jersey Journal, May 3, 1907; “A.A. Team Beaten; So Were Giants,” Wilmington Morning News, July 29, 1903; “Baseball News,” Wilmington Evening Journal, May 17, 1902.

28 “Two Good Ball Games,” St. Albans (Vermont) Daily Messenger, May 21, 1900.

29 Consider the images that a search of ‘1905 Philadelphia Giants’ yields.

30 “Players Mix-Up at Inlet Ball Park,” Camden Courier Post, July 29, 1909.

31 Lloyd Thompson, “Disbanding the Eastern League Proves a Tremendous Boon to Danny McClellan,” Philadelphia Tribune, November 8, 1928; W. Rollo Wilson, “Sports Shots,” Pittsburgh Courier, March 31, 1928.

32 Wins (1906): 4/18 vs Altoona, 4/26 vs Wilkes-Barre, 5/7 vs Steubenville, 5/17 vs Braddock, 6/1 vs Brooklyn Royal Giants, 6/24 vs Minooka, 7/5 vs Atlantic City, 7/14 vs Riverton-Palmyra, 8/21 vs Atlantic City, 9/3 vs Cuban X-Giants, 9/6 vs Cuban X-Giants, 9/10 vs Brooklyn Royal Giants, 9/13 vs Brooklyn Royal Giants, 9/18 vs Long Branch, 9/23 vs Brightons.

33 Philadelphia Item, October 13, 1906; “Athletics Have Close Call,” Philadelphia Inquirer, October 13, 1906.

34 “Big Game for Camden,” Philadelphia Inquirer, October 10, 1906.

35 Philadelphia Item, October 14, 1906.

36 Ibid.

37 Wins (1907): 5/5 vs Hoboken, 5/30 vs Frankford, 6/4 vs Vineland, 6/8 vs Brooklyn Royal Giants, 7/7 vs Elizabeth Stars, 7/13 vs Atlantic City, 7/25 vs Atlantic City, 7/27 vs Brooklyn Royal Giants, 8/6 vs Pottstown Y.M.C.A., 9/15 vs Hoboken.

38 “Philadelphia Giants Won,” Brooklyn Daily Eagle, July 28, 1907.

39 Wins (1908): 4/13 vs Reading, 5/10 vs Ridgewoods, 5/31 vs Loughlin Lyceum, 7/9 vs Atlantic City, 7/13 vs Brooklyn Royal Giants, 8/9 vs Chicago Normals, 9/3 vs Brooklyn Royal Giants. Wins (1909): 5/26 vs Brooklyn Royal Giants, 6/13 vs Hoboken, 6/18 vs Benton, 6/22 vs Reedsville, 6/26 vs Coatesville, 7/4 vs Cuban Giants, 7/25 vs Hoboken, 9/26 vs Brooklyn Royal Giants. Wins (1910): 5/22 vs Urban Libertys, 5/28 vs Chicago Red Sox, 6/1 vs Chicago All-Stars, 6/21 vs Dixon Browns, 7/1 vs Pittsfield, 7/31 vs Ridgewood, 9/5 vs Black Sox.

40 “Ridge Captures Close Game from Royal Giants,” Brooklyn Eagle, April 4, 1910.

41 Wins (1911): 5/7 vs Paterson, 5/21 vs Ironsides, 6/10 vs Pittsfield, 8/5 vs Atlantic City, 8/14 vs Atlantic City, 9/4 vs Chicago American Giants.

42 “Lincoln Giants Win Twice at American League Park,” Brooklyn Eagle, September 5, 1911.

43 “All Leaguers Defeat Lincolns,” New York Age, October 19, 1911.

44 “Plank and Barry Help Beat Lincolns,” New York Herald, October 19, 1911.

45 “Smart Set Played New York to a Standstill,” Paterson Morning Call, May 27, 1912.

46 Ibid.

47 Ibid. Note the “umpire Warner” mentioned in the game’s account may have been former catcher Jack Warner, who dabbled in umpiring and was a frequent presence in New York City’s semipro scene.

48 Ibid.

49 For example, pitching for the Jenkintown Giants, he lost to Hilldale in August 1915. See “Hilldale 10, Jenkintown 3,” Philadelphia Tribune, August 28, 1915. As late as 1924, he pitched in relief in the famed Palm Beach hotel league: see W. Rollo Wilson, “Sports Shots,” Pittsburgh Courier, December 8, 1928.

50 “Questions Answered,” Sporting Life, January 28, 1899: 6. In this brief response (to an unpublished letter), McClellan is mentioned in conjunction with John M. Bright and Bud Fowler, both long-standing promoters in that era’s African American baseball.

51 For an overview of the era’s African American minor leagues, see Lawrence D. Hogan, Shades of Glory: The Negro Leagues and the Story of African-American Baseball (Washington, D.C.: National Geographic, 2006): 178-182.

52 The latest mention of McClellan leading the team noted by the author: “Toymakers Face Philly Combine,” Springfield Republican, August 13, 1939.

53 The two rest in separate plots within Eden Cemetery.

54 Ed Hughes, “’Simon Pures’ and the ‘Pro,’” Harrisburg Telegraph, January 26, 1923.

55 William F. Clark, “’Old Timer’ Picks an All-Star Baseball Team,” New York Age, January 10, 1925.

56 “’All-Time,’ All-Star Nines Picked by Louisville Fan,” Pittsburgh Courier, January 19, 1929. The ‘Bill Donalson’ mentioned in this list is assumed to be John Donaldson.

57 “Power, Speed, Skill Make All-America Team Excel,” Pittsburgh Courier, April 19, 1952.

Full Name

Daniel J. McClellan


June 11, 1878 at Norfolk, VA (US)


March 10, 1962 at Philadelphia, PA (US)

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