Jack Harper

“[Jack] Harper’s career in baseball has been rather sensational,” noted a sportswriter in 1908.1 At the major league level, the pitcher began with the worst of all teams, the 1899 20-134 Cleveland Spiders, and finished with one of the greatest, the 1906 116-36 Chicago Cubs. In between lay betrayal, court rulings, moments of near greatness, and lapses of effort, topped with a memorable myth that has wound its way through a century of baseball history.

Charles William Harper was born on April 2, 1878, in Galloway, Pennsylvania, the fourth of William and Elizabeth Harper’s five children to survive infancy. The boy took the name Jack early on. Galloway was oil country, and the elder Harper, who served in the 100th Pennsylvania Volunteers during the Civil War, made his living in this industry. The family soon moved some 10 miles east to Oil City.

“All I knew until I was 17 was oil,” Harper recalled late in life. When a large discovery occurred in Gibsonburg, Ohio, in 1895, he headed west. “They had a ball club at Gibsonburg. I started working out with them, found out I could throw hard with little effort and was immediately called a pitcher.”2 By midseason 1896 he signed with a semipro team in Marion, Ohio for $100 a month. Harper remained with Marion in 1897, and after beating the Western League’s Detroit Tigers in June, received an offer from that club. It wasn’t enticing enough. Instead, later that season Harper joined the semipro St. Marys, Ohio, squad. When the Toledo Mud Hens of the Interstate League came courting, he again demurred. “I made a mistake in declining to go,” he noted years later, “for St. Marys ‘blew up’ and I lost my last month’s pay.”3

Harper made his professional debut in 1898 with the Montgomery Senators of the Southern League. The league existed on tenuous financial footing; with their pay compromised, Harper and Topsy Hartsel abandoned the team, tramped north, and joined an independent team in Salem, Ohio. Here they were recommended to Thayer Torreyson, who, with his brother Frank, operated the Interstate League’s Grand Rapids Cabinet Makers. They signed. Harper went 2-6 with Montgomery, and 14-17 with Grand Rapids that year.

He stayed with the Torreysons as the 1899 season began. Their operation was a shoe-string affair, and after months of playing in front of small, unenthusiastic crowds, the entire Cabinet Makers team moved to Columbus, Ohio, in the most unusual of swaps: The Columbus Buckeyes of the Western League went to Grand Rapids and became the Furniture Makers.4 Harper was attracting interest by this time, and the Torreysons were sellers. In mid-September, having gone 12-29 for a team that finished 49-91, he was sold for $1000 to the National League’s St. Louis Perfectos.

The owners of the Perfectos, Frank and Stanley Robison, also operated the Cleveland Spiders. The twenty-one-year-old Harper was transferred to Cleveland, and made his major league debut on September 18, 1899, in Washington, beating the Senators 5-4 in ten innings. It was Cleveland’s 20th and final victory of the season, and snapped a 24-game losing streak. Harper started and lost another four games, including a 4-3 loss to the Perfectos on October 1, which impressed the ‘parent’ club.

The National League contracted to eight teams in 1900, the Perfectos became the Cardinals, and Jack Harper was retained after an impressive spring training.

The Cardinals were a veteran team anchored by three future Hall-of-Famers (Jesse Burkett, Bobby Wallace, Cy Young), with two more (John McGraw, Wilbert Robinson) on the way. After an 84-67 showing the season before, pennant expectations ran high.

The Cardinals were tied with the Phillies in first place when Harper made his 1900 debut on April 30 at Chicago. He retired the first three Orphan batters in the first. In the second he yielded two runs on a walk, single, and error by first baseman Dan McGann, who dropped the ball when Harper fielded a soft grounder and threw to him. In the third, after Burkett’s error, a wild pitch by the now unnerved Harper, single, sacrifice, and walk, McGann scooped up Bill Everitt’s grounder. Instead of stepping on the bag, and throwing to the plate, “the giant stood still and everyone landed safe”.5 Another wild pitch, hit, and error followed and Harper’s day ended. Chicago went on to a 9-6 victory. A couple weeks later, without Harper seeing additional action, manager Patsy Tebeau farmed the youngster out to Fort Wayne of the Interstate League.

Harper’s new team was 7-11 when he first took the ball for them on May 16. From there, he almost single-handedly pulled the Indians into the league lead six weeks later. Then, having “been worked to death,” including one stretch of three complete games in four days, losses arrived.6 His Interstate season ended with a 20-15 record. Fort Wayne finished second at 85-53.

Meanwhile, the Cardinals floundered. By September, Tebeau was gone. When their season ended, at 65-75, amid reports of excessive drunkenness and “indifferent work,” management withheld the final month of pay from all players except McGraw, Robinson, Young, and Patsy Donovan.7 (Reports had surfaced mid-season that the team had indeed “thrown down” Harper that chilly day in Chicago.)8

The Robisons gave the managerial reins to Donovan in 1901, and his sober, forthright manner provided a sharp break from the behavior Tebeau had tolerated. When Cy Young jumped to the Boston team in the new American League, Jack Harper replaced him in the rotation.

Unlike the husky Young, the handsome blond right-hander was so slender it raised “the question whether he will last out an inning.”9 St. Louis papers initially mocked Harper’s appearance, finding him “slim, debonair, and soft of speech.”10 Under the striking Cardinals uniform he wore blue sleeves.

Although Thayer Torreyson had described him “knocking the catcher down with his speed” in 1898, Harper’s fastball was not considered among the era’s best.11 His Cleveland Spiders manager, Joe Quinn, stated his “curveball is like no other that I have ever seen. It breaks quickly and is very deceiving.”12 “An occasional slow one” kept batters off-balance, and the frequent mention of his “shoots” suggests he jammed right-handed batters with a running fastball.13

“He has everything but command,” noted an observer before the 1901 season.14 When Harper’s command failed him, he was as wild “as a Montana pony.”15 This wildness could be exacerbated by poor play behind him, or poor signal calling behind the plate.

In 1901, however, Jack Harper lived a charmed season. Assisted in part by Donovan’s willingness to pull him when he began to unravel, he was among the pitching leaders in mid-season. Backtracking local papers admitted he “is not nearly as delicate a lad as his blond hair and blue sleeves would lead one to believe.”16 Local fans warmed to him as well. On June 5, after his “plucky and effective” pitching helped best Christy Mathewson and the visiting Giants, “at least 2000” of them stood outside after the game waiting for Harper and his teammates to emerge from their dressing room.17

The Cardinals spent the summer in a tight pennant race with the Pirates, Phillies, and Superbras, before fading to a 76-64 fourth-place finish. Harper faded with the team; after standing at 14-4 on July 19, he finished with a 23-13 record. Nonetheless all parties could call the campaign a success. The team’s season attendance of 379,988 set a franchise record and comfortably paced the league. Harper had signed for $1200. The Robisons voluntarily bumped his pay to $1800 in mid-season, and informed him he would receive another raise when he signed for 1902. On August 8, he married his hometown sweetheart, Mary Dockery, in Oil City.

But troubles had surfaced during the season. The players noted the crowds, heard of Pittsburgh players being offered bonuses not proposed to them by the Robisons, and began muttering. Team business manager Louie Heilbroner “started a spy system” on the players. A number, including Harper, were called on the carpet. The young pitcher was charged with “keeping late hours and having improper associations.” Harper did not plead innocent on these counts, but instead reportedly asked Heilbroner, “If I am doing good pitching in practically my first year in the National League, do you think I can be dissipating much?”18

In the midst of the brewing discontent, Jimmy McAleer, appointed by American League president Ban Johnson to run the younger circuit’s St. Louis franchise (freshly relocated from Milwaukee) in 1902, moved in to poach. He quickly grabbed six Cardinals, including Wallace and Burkett. Harper, however, had already signed a contract with the Robisons, for $2400, on August 21. Weeks later, with the six other jumpers encouraging him to do so, he signed with the new Browns team for $3000 and accepted an advance. The Robisons and Johnson volleyed accusations during the off-season. Harper, uncertain of his fate, held the Browns’ advance check until Wallace and McAleer visited him in January and persuaded him to cash it and go with them to spring training. Frank Robison sought an injunction, and the matter played out in the St. Louis Circuit Court that May. The ruling favored the Browns.

“Jack has as good speed as he had last year and his heart is as stout as his arm,” The Sporting News reported in July 1902, “but he is of a nervous temperament and unless the breaks are with him is inclined to be unsteady.”19 By this point, Harper’s season with the Browns was a lost cause. Young Jiggs Donahue’s catching had Harper throwing his glove down in disgust. Umpire Bob Caruthers’s calls led to arguments and a suspension. In a June 30 game against visiting Cleveland, Harper’s peevish nature and McAleer’s unwillingness to sooth it reached an ugly climax. Already down 12-1 in the sixth, Harper lobbed gopher balls to Nap Lajoie, Charlie Hickman, and Bill Bradley, resulting in back-to-back-to-back homers into the left field bleachers. The Browns lost 17-2, with McAleer content to leave Harper in for the duration.

The Browns finished their first St. Louis campaign at 78-58, five games behind the Philadelphia Athletics in second place. Jack Harper’s record stood at 15-11, with 13 of his victories coming against second-division clubs, including six from last-place Baltimore. When Cincinnati Reds player-manager Joe Kelley visited St. Louis in late August and offered Harper a $4000 salary for the upcoming 1903 season, the pitcher asked McAleer if the Browns wished to make a counter-offer. The Browns had signed Christy Mathewson away from the Giants and considered Harper expendable, so McAleer wished him good fortune with the Reds. (To conclude a peace treaty between the leagues in January 1903, Browns owner Robert Hedges reluctantly ceded his claim to Mathewson.)

Not yet 25, Harper had already experienced arm problems. In mid-June of 1901 he had complained of inflammation. Intertwined with his other problems during the 1902 season were occasional mentions of arm troubles, as he threw but 222 1/3 innings.

As spring training approached, Harper reported from Oil City he had “got myself right down to fighting fettle” from off-season gymnasium work-outs.20 But when he arrived, he was considered “a bit fat,” or “a trifle overweight.”21 Kelley handed his new recruit the ball on opening day, April 16, against visiting Pittsburgh. Harper was “wilder than a March hare,” issuing eight walks, three to Pirates pitcher Deacon Phillippe, and lost 7-1.22

This set the tone for another disappointing season for Harper. Arm soreness dogged him, his curve ball proved hard to place, his fastball lost velocity, and he resorted to a sidearm motion with little improvement. Harper got along well with the amiable Kelley. But the Reds skipper earned occasional criticism for leaving his pitcher in after Harper lost control, both with the plate and with his emotions.

During an August break, spending a few days at the Atlantic City beaches, Harper was thrown against a post by a wave and sprained his leg. Or so it was reported. During an era when many players drank to excess, there is no evidence that Harper was one of them. When he was reported to be out of condition, it seemed less a euphemism than a direct observation. The incident essentially ended his season. Only one ineffective start followed. Harper finished with an 8-9 record over 135 innings for the 74-65 Reds.

“I know I was a great disappointment last season,” Harper admitted as his second season in Cincinnati neared. But due to improved conditioning, “I expect to pitch as good ball as I ever did in my life.”23 Perhaps defying expectations, Jack Harper did just that in 1904.

He had lost significant weight, and while his control remained occasionally erratic, Harper was again pitching in an overhand motion, with all the pitches within his repertoire at his command. On June 4, with the Reds and Giants locked in a close race with the Cubs atop the standings, his career highlight occurred in front of a reported record baseball crowd of 37,223 at the Polo Grounds. Matched against undefeated “Iron Man” Joe McGinnity, undefeated Jack Harper kept the Giants hitless through eight innings before yielding a run in the ninth, tying the score at 1-1. Both sides scored once again in the 11th inning. Then, with darkness settling in, Umpire Hank O’Day called the game a 2-2 tie.24

The Reds could not keep up with the Giants, finishing 18 games off the pace, at 88-65. Enthusiasm nonetheless greeted the team’s effort. Harper finished at 23-9, and by most statistical measures (ERA+, WHIP) it was his finest season. He signed for $4000 for the 1905 season, in which he reverted to his worst form.

He again put on too many off-season pounds.25 In spring training he reported: “my wing is not all good.”26 In the season opener, Harper proved “not in shape to stand a long battle” and the Pirates sent him down to a 9-4 defeat.27 His struggles continued until he regained his form in mid-season, only to fade due to a combination of arm problems and disenchantment. Harper finished 9-13 for the 79-74 fifth-place Reds, not starting after August 11.

After the season, Cincinnati put him on the trading block. Inquiries poured into president Garry Herrmann’s office. The Phillies made noise. The Tigers offered Frank Kitson. A Jack Harper/Cy Seymour swap for Joe McGinnity/Sam Mertes was rumored to be appealing to John McGraw. Fred Clarke reportedly offered any pitcher from his Pirates staff even up for Harper.28

In the midst of the trade talk, Joe Kelley resigned as manager, and Herrmann recruited Ned Hanlon to lead the Reds. “Foxy Ned” promptly cancelled any trade plans for Harper, wishing to retain him for his 1906 staff.

Harper reported to camp relatively trim and his arm held up well at first as the regular season began. It didn’t last; on May 4, Harper couldn’t make it out of the second in a 6-3 loss to the Cardinals, which dropped the Reds to 7-16.

What followed has become a piece of baseball lore. Its historiographical origins date to a 1915 article by Chicago sportswriter Hugh Fullerton:

“Harper was pitching for the Reds at a salary of $4500. In one game he hit Frank Chance three times with pitched balls, the last one rendering Chance unconscious. Chance accused Harper of hitting him purposely and informed the pitcher of his intention of ‘putting him out of the business.’ That winter President Murphy made a trade with Cincinnati. Chance insisted upon having Harper in the trade. Cincinnati traded Harper to Chicago and the Cubs offered Harper a salary of $1500. Chance told Harper he had him; that he would either sign that contract or quit.”29

In the century since, a fitting coda has been added to the story: after signing Harper, Chance then spitefully benched the pitcher for virtually the entire season, allowing him to pitch but one inning for the 116-36 pennant winning Cubs, and destroying his career.

It is a grand old tale, but with little basis in fact.

Harper did hit Chance three times in the opening game of a May 30, 1904, doubleheader in Cincinnati. In the first inning, one of his “speedy inshoots” caught Chance “fairly below the left eye on his cheek bone, felling him like an ox.”30 Chicago’s “Peerless Leader” almost lost consciousness before being revived by cold water and helped to first base by his teammates. But the Cincinnati Enquirer reported the next two beanings as questionable. “To those in the stands it looked very much as if the ball, on each occasion, hit the handle of his bat.”31 The Cincinnati Post concurred. The Chicago Daily Tribune and the Chicago Inter Ocean, while reporting the horrific nature of the first beaning, thought nothing else of it. Nor did Chance. He played the second game of the doubleheader, getting hit in the ribs by one of Win Kellum’s pitches in the process.

Frank Chance notoriously ceded no quarter to pitchers, announcing several years earlier that “they can’t frighten me by hitting me once or twice, and I’ll stand up to the plate just as close as ever.”32 Jack Harper notoriously struggled with his control. In fact, in a July 25, 1903, game in Chicago, he hit Chance twice. That garnered no particular attention from the press, and both players were silent on the subject, as they were the next season after the game in Cincinnati. Other than these two games, there are no other recorded incidents of Harper hitting Chance. Nor is there any evidence of any simmering hostility between the Reds and Cubs in this era.

Jack Harper had, even including the ‘throw down’ loss in 1900, an 11-5 record against the Cubs coming into the 1906 season.33 Then, before he was traded to Chicago, three of his five 1906 starts came against Chance and the Cubs. He lost to them 5-1 on April 13, beat them 3-2 on April 16, and pitched the entirety of a grueling 12-inning 7-6 loss on April 27. Harper was something of a Cub killer. And Chance was exceptionally aware of pitching matchups, with baseball historian Chris Jaffe calling him “the game’s greatest leverager of starting pitchers.”34

New York and Pittsburgh had outclassed Chicago in the three previous pennant races. McGraw and Clarke were particularly interested in Harper when Herrmann floated him as trade bait. A month into the 1906 season, on May 7, the Cubs stood a half game behind the Giants, with the Pirates lurking another four games behind. The Sporting News reported one of Chance’s starting pitchers (Bob Wicker) as out of condition, and another (Ed Reulbach) dealing with arm issues.35

Harper, meanwhile, was making $4000 in 1905. After Hanlon cut down Cincinnati’s attempt to trade him that off-season, Herrmann offered Harper a contract that the owner noted “may not be exactly what he desires.”36 What exactly this offer was seems lost to history. It may even have been $1500. Harper had little leverage: his 1905 season was a poor one, and there was a general deflationary trend in salaries after the inter-league peace. Receiving the contract in February 1906, as he was opening a shoe store in downtown Oil City, Harper returned it signed.

Harper stated years later that, after the 1906 season was underway, Chance approached him, asking of his willingness to pitch for the Cubs.37 On May 7, Herrmann dealt Harper to the Cubs for Hans Lobert, Armed with knowledge of Chance’s interest, and sensing that Chicago also sent Herrmann cash, Harper balked, threatening to retire to his business interests. Finally, the deal was consummated, with Harper telling the press: “There was only a slight disagreement between Mr. Herrmann of the Reds and me, and that was easily adjusted after a short conference.”38 Harper later maintained the adjustment was $1000 of his sale price. It is unclear what contract the Cubs offered him for his 1906 services. But he did not object to it. Instead, Harper recalled, it was at the onset of the 1907 season that Chicago offered him a cut in his salary.39

Thus, the actors in this chapter of baseball history deserve a better fate than what Fullerton cooked up for them. Frank Chance did not act out of unthinking vengeance toward an individual but instead with sophisticated cunning towards greater goals. Jack Harper again proved himself bold enough to pursue his own self-interests.

Finally, just as Chance’s pennant was not pre-ordained, nor was Harper’s final inning. He tore a nail from the thumb of his pitching hand practicing on May 22, pitched with some difficulty in an exhibition game on May 29, before Chance handed his new pitcher a starting assignment on June 6. It was not a trivial one: at the Polo Grounds, with the Cubs three games up on both the Giants and the Pirates when the day began. Harper retired Roger Bresnahan and George Browne, before facing Dan McGann. The Giants’ first baseman laced a smash that, years later, Harper would tell an interviewer, “caught the sore thumb and literally smashed the end off, leaving the bone exposed on top.”40 Thus it would prove that McGann accomplished what he could not six years earlier: ending Jack Harper’s major league career.

For the next two years, Harper floated through sporting pages like a ghost. He later recalled that, after recovering from McGann’s shot, “a chipped bone in the elbow” crippled his return. He was transferred to Columbus of the American Association in 1907 before being sent back to the Cubs. Later that season St. Paul of the American Association expressed interested, then Oil City of the Interstate League. In 1908, Providence and Montreal in the Eastern League made inquiries. With the exception of one game for Columbus on May 17, 190741, there is no record of Harper pitching in this span.

Instead, Harper was mostly home in Oil City, busy with his shoe store business and his family, including a daughter, Virginia, born in 1903. The Harpers moved some 60 miles north to Jamestown, New York, in 1908. Jack operated a café, then a delivery service, then a grill. He appreciated “the quiet and peace of Western New York” and looked back upon his baseball past fondly, recalling Joe Tinker as his toughest out, breaking in Branch Rickey as a catcher, and his epic 1904 battle with McGinnity.42 He died on September 30, 1950, and was buried in Jamestown’s Holy Cross Cemetery. Virginia had passed away in 1928; his wife Mary survived him.



I would like to thank Barb Cessna of the Fenton History Center and Randy Anderson of the Chautauqua Sports Hall of Fame for their assistance in obtaining materials related to Jack Harper’s life in Jamestown, New York.

In addition to the sources noted in this biography, the author also accessed Harper’s player file from the National Baseball Hall of Fame, and the following sites:







Photo credit

SDN-001727, Chicago Daily News negatives collection, Chicago History Museum



1 “Jack Harper Tires of His Quiet Life,” The [Chicago] Inter Ocean, February 21, 1908.

2 Frank Hyde, “Jack Harper of Jamestown Pitched to ‘Em All From Nap Lajoie to Home Run Baker; Broke in Branch Rickey, Sr. as Catcher,” Jamestown [NY] Post-Journal, December 27, 1946.

3 “Jack Harper an Optimist,” Cincinnati Enquirer, April 1, 1904.

4 For the Torreysons’ background, see “The Nomad of the Interstate League,” Baseball History Daily, http://baseballhistorydaily.com/tag/thayer-torreyson/, accessed May 3, 2014.

5 “Win on St. Louis Errors,” Chicago Daily Tribune, May 1, 1900.

6 “Our Pitching Staff,” Fort Wayne Daily News, July 2, 1900.

7 “Salary Withheld,” The Sporting News, October 20, 1900, 4.

8 “St. Louis Club Strong as an Individual Body,” St. Louis Republic, June 10, 1900.

9 “Another Victory for the Cardinals,” St. Louis Republic, May 1, 1901.

10 “Ball Players Have a Useful Practice,” St. Louis Republic, April 4, 1901.

11 “Old and New Tales of the National Game,” Syracuse Journal, April 5, 1904.

12 “Sporting Gossip,” Sandusky [OH] Star-Journal, October 13, 1899.

13 “Great Twirling,” Fort Wayne Sentinel, August 7, 1900.

14 “Perfectos Here,” The Sporting News, April 6, 1901, 4.

15 “With a Dull Thud,” Fort Wayne Sentinel, August 6, 1900.

16 “Baseball News and Gossip,” St. Louis Republic, June 19, 1901. His blue sleeves form a minor myth in Harper’s career. They were not underwear; only a long-sleeved shirt worn under his jersey. There is no reporting of him wearing his blue sleeves past 1901.

17 “Advance Slowly,” The Sporting News, June 15, 1901, 4.

18 “Great Ball Town,” The Sporting News, October 5, 1901, 4.

19 “Poor Patronage,” The Sporting News, July 5, 1902, 4.

20 “Gossip of the Players,” The Sporting News, March 21, 1903, 2.

21 “Sutthoff or Harper to Pitch in Opening Game,” Pittsburgh Press, April 2 1903; J. Ed Grillo “First or Second,” The Sporting News, April 4, 1903, 1.

22 Ren Mulford Jr., “Redland is Dazed,” The Sporting Life, April 25, 1904, 3.

23 “Gossip of the Players,” The Sporting News, April 9, 1904, 2.

24 “Baseball’s Record Crowd,” New York Times, June 5, 1904.

25 For an indication of Harper’s portliness, and the only representation of his actual pitching motion the author has discovered, see Cincinnati Post, April 19, 1906. (Note he was reportedly in better condition when this photo was taken in early in 1906 than in early 1905.)

26 “Straight Bourbon and Georgia Crackers,” Cincinnati Post, April 5, 1905.

27 “Harper – Went Up in the Air,” Cincinnati Enquirer, April 15, 1905.

28 Were some of these rumors planted by Herrmann? Possibly. For the Phillies: “Sporting Notes,” Boston Herald, December 27, 1905; Tigers: “Kitson is Offered the Reds for Jack Harper,” Pittsburgh Press, November 29, 1905; Pirates: Jack Ryder, “Signed: To Manage the Reds,” Cincinnati Enquirer, December 15, 1906; Giants: Wm. F. H. Koelsch, “Metropolitan Mention,” Sporting Life, November 18, 1905, 4.

29 Hugh S. Fullerton, “How Magnates Drive Men Out of Organized Baseball,” The Day Book, January 20, 1915, 22.

30 “Baseball Gossip,” Cincinnati Enquirer, May 31, 1904.

31 Ibid. For other accounts of the game see: “The Redtown Bugle,” Cincinnati Post, May 31, 1904; “Colts Lose One; Win the Other,” Chicago Daily Tribune, May 31, 1904; “Chance Hit by a Pitched Ball at Cincinnati,” The [Chicago] Inter Ocean, May 31, 1904.

32 “Gossip of the Players,” The Sporting News, January 5, 1901, 2.

33 His victories over Chicago: 7/25/1901, 8/3/1901, 9/15/1901, 4/22/1903, 7/25/1903, 4/17/1904, 5/30/1904, 6/20/1904, 7/29/1904, 5/2/1905, 5/31/1905. His losses to Chicago: 4/30/1900, 7/23/1901, 8/2/1903, 9/17/1904, 6/25/1905.

34 Chris Jaffe, Evaluating Baseball Managers: A History and Analysis of Performance in the Major Leagues, 1876-2008 (Jefferson, NC: McFarland, 2010), 83.

35 I.E. Sanborn, “Closely Bunched,” The Sporting News, May 5, 1906, 1.

36 “Said by the Magnates,” The Sporting News, February 3, 1906, 4.

37 Frank Hyde, “Jack Harper Held Out Against Herrmann and Became First Player Cut In On Sale,” Jamestown [NY] Post-Journal, December 28, 1946. Note nowhere in the three-part 1946 interview is there any mention of Fullerton’s story. The tale seems to have lay dormant until resurrected in Harold Seymour, Baseball: The Golden Age (New York: Oxford, 1971), 178.

38 “Harper to Join Cubs,” [Rockford, IL] Daily Register Gazette, May 11, 1906.

39 Hyde, “Jack Harper Held Out.”

40 Frank Hyde, “Bobby Wallace, Not Wagner, Greatest Shortstop, Says Harper; Tells of 1 to 1 Duel With McGinnity,” Jamestown [NY] Post-Journal, December 30, 1946.

41 The Sporting Life, June 1, 1907, 17.

42 Hyde, “Wallace.”

Full Name

Charles William Harper


April 2, 1878 at Galloway, PA (USA)


September 30, 1950 at Jamestown, NY (USA)

If you can help us improve this player’s biography, contact us.