Bill Lattimore

Bill Lattimore

This article was written by Bill Lamb


Bill LattimoreThe most coveted player in the September 1907 minor league player draft was 23-year-old Bill Lattimore. All 16 National and American League clubs placed the name of the Toledo Mud Hens lefthander on the player wish lists submitted to the National Commission. The winner of the Lattimore lottery was the AL Cleveland Naps, a stroke of good fortune that doubly delighted Naps’ brass; the club had spent the previous month trying to induce Toledo club boss Bill Armour to part with the pitcher, but without success. Now, the luck of the draw had propelled hot prospect Lattimore into Cleveland’s embrace.

A brilliant 1908 spring training camp seemed to vindicate the Naps’ assessment of Lattimore’s potential. Then, in only his second regular season start, Lattimore threw a six-hit shutout at the Chicago White Sox. Given this auspicious beginning, it seems unfathomable that Lattimore’s major league career had only two more games left in it. Yet all it took was a pair of substandard outings for the Naps to give up on the youngster and return him to Toledo. Lattimore never got a subsequent major league shot. Indeed, three years later, he left Organized Baseball to pursue an opportunity in the retail clothing business. This commercial venture proved a success, but Lattimore did not have long to enjoy its fruits. Debilitated by tuberculosis, he was unable to work during the final years of his life and died in October 1919 at age 35. The story of Bill Lattimore’s abbreviated and unfulfilled — at least in baseball — life follows.

William Hershel Lattimore was born on May 25, 1884, in Roxton, a sparsely populated agricultural community located in North-Central Texas not far from the border with [then] Oklahoma Territory. He was the fifth of eight children born to Confederate Army cavalry veteran and farmer Joseph M. Lattimore (1845-1926) and his first wife Clementine (née Ware, 1849-1899).1 It appears that Joseph Lattimore was a man of some means, as he could afford to have most of his children, including Bill, educated through high school — far from the norm at the time. The death of Clementine Lattimore and Joseph’s 1900 second marriage, to widow Mary Bennington, eventually added half-brother James (born 1904) to the family, giving the Lattimore household enough male members to field its own baseball team. There is no evidence that Bill’s father took an interest in the game, but older brother Bob (later the District Attorney of Lamar, Fannin, and Red River counties) was reportedly an excellent ballplayer and an avid baseball fan.2

Like other area youngsters before him, Bill Lattimore began his ball playing days on the prairie diamonds of home and those of Paris, the nearby Lamar County seat. Listed in modern reference works as 5-feet-9 and 165 pounds but probably bigger,3 the lefty all the way doubled as a pitcher and outfielder-first baseman for local nines. In 1905, Lattimore began his professional career as a 21-year-old by signing with the regrettably named Paris Parasites of the Class D North Texas League. He accompanied the league-leading franchise when operations were transferred to Hope in late July. The North Texas League disbanded three weeks later, but Hope continued playing, taking on independent and semipro clubs. In one such contest, Lattimore whitewashed a team from Prescott, Arizona, 10-0, facing only 28 batters.4

Over the winter, it was reported that Bill Lattimore, “said to be a good fielder and … a comer as a hitter,” had been signed for 1906 by the Dallas Giants of the Class D Texas League.5 But when the time came, he spent the season in another Class D circuit, the Oklahoma- and Arkansas-based South Central League. With Lattimore leading the way — he threw a 1-0, one-hitter against the Guthrie (Oklahoma) Senators in mid-June — his South McAlester (Oklahoma) Miners sat comfortably atop the pack when the league disbanded in August. Thereafter, Lattimore pitched and played outfield for the Webb City (Missouri) Goldbugs of the Class C Western Association. He debuted with his new club on August 14, notching a 10-strikeout victory over the Leavenworth (Kansas) Old Soldiers, 3-2.6 He finished the campaign with a 6-2 hurling log for Webb City. Bill also played 23 games in the outfield, batting a useful .246, but his defense was suspect (.891 FA).

Over the next 12 months, Lattimore’s fortunes skyrocketed. During the winter of 1906-1907, he vaulted into the game’s top echelon, becoming the property of the American League St. Louis Browns.7 Before the season started, however, the Browns sold the prospect to the Toledo Mud Hens of the Class A American Association.8 Lattimore transitioned to the upgrade in competition with ease. Although possessing no more than an average fastball and curve, the southpaw had a fine change-up and used the spitter as his out pitch. But his most vital hurling asset was usually pinpoint control.9 He quickly settled into the four-man rotation that propelled Toledo to a near-miss (.88-65, .575) second-place finish to the AA pennant-winning Columbus Senators. By season’s end, Lattimore had compiled good, if not particularly eye-catching, numbers for the Mud Hens: 13-8 (.619). In 239 innings pitched, he surrendered 203 base hits, with 82 strikeouts and only 36 walks.10

In terms of productivity, Lattimore ranked no better than fourth among Toledo pitchers, outperformed by staff ace Charlie Chech (25-11, 314 IP, 134 strikeouts), Hi West (17-9, 231 IP, 140 strikeouts), and Jack Sutthoff (15-8, 193 IP, 62 strikeouts).11 But the staff leaders were all known commodities, having already been tried in the majors and found wanting.12 Lattimore was untested at the top level and young, and thus the more intriguing prospect, apparently. Whatever the reason, Toledo boss Bill Armour was inundated with offers for Lattimore as the 1907 season progressed.13 Foremost among the Lattimore suitors was the Cleveland Naps, reportedly offering “something like $3,500” for the lefty.14 But with his Mud Hens club in the midst of a dogfight for the American Association crown, Armour was not disposed to part with the pitcher (or anyone else on the Toledo club, for that matter). But Armour could do nothing to prevent Mud Hens players from being exposed to that September’s minor league player draft.

Cleveland was far from the only major league team desirous of drafting Bill Lattimore. Indeed, his name appeared on the player lists submitted by every club in the National and American Leagues.15 But as luck would have it, the Naps won the Lattimore drawing. In the draft’s aftermath, Cleveland sportswriter Ed Bang related that “Cleveland owners [John] Kilfoyl and [Charles] Somers are wearing smiles that can’t be eradicated. … They succeeded in landing Bill ‘Tex’ Lattimore, the most sought for player in the minor leagues.”16 The other minor leaguers drafted by Cleveland included three more from Toledo: pitcher Chech, outfielder Josh Clarke, and infielder George Perring.17

Cleveland’s prize draftee did not disappoint in spring camp. In his first appearance in Naps livery, Lattimore combined with Charlie Chech on a 14-0 exhibition game no-hitter against the helpless Macon (Georgia) Brigands of the Class C South Atlantic League.18 Lattimore also chipped in two base hits and nailed a Macon baserunner with a slick pickoff move to first. The only flaw in his four-inning performance was uncharacteristic wildness: three walks and three hit batsmen. Used sparingly thereafter, Lattimore was outstanding each time he was called upon. In 17 innings against minor league opposition, he allowed only four hits and one run, leaving the Cleveland Plain Dealer to declare: “Of all the Nap pitchers who performed during the exhibition and practice games this spring, none did any better than Bill Lattimore.”19 The good-hitting Lattimore’s ability to help his club with the bat was also noted,20 while AL umpire Jack Sheridan touted the Cleveland rookie as likely to be the league’s best pitcher in 1908.21

Once the regular season commenced, Cleveland second baseman-manager Nap Lajoie lost little time getting his rookie recruit into action, starting him against Detroit in the campaign’s third contest. During the action, it became apparent that Lattimore had more than just a spitball and good control to flummox enemy batsmen. He was also a dawdler, exasperating hitters, fans, and sportswriters alike with the amount of time he took between pitches. Recalling his major league debut, unadmiring Cleveland scribe Henry P. Edwards described how “Lattimore would step leisurely onto the hurling hill, spit on his glove, pull down his cap, hitch up his pants, gaze here and there, and take another chew of tobacco. Then he would look at [catcher] ‘Nig’ Clarke, get a signal, and then shake his head. By that time Clarke was on his feet again waiting for the ball. When Lattimore shook his head Clarke would squat down again and the pitcher would go through the motion from start to finish. Finally, he would wind up with a big pump handle and cut loose. By that time the Detroit batsman had fidgeted himself all over the box and usually swung far too soon on the ball.”22

Over the first five innings, the slow-motion tactics worked, as Lattimore held the Tigers to just one base hit and took a 4-0 lead into the sixth inning. Then fielding miscues by the usually reliable Lajoie cost Lattimore a pair of runs and Detroit added two more in the seventh. Still, the rookie held a 6-4 lead going into the ninth, but proved unable to finish. Detroit had tied the score before staff ace Addie Joss was summoned to the rescue. Ultimately, the Naps prevailed, 12-8, in 11 innings, with Lattimore getting a no-decision.

The next time out, Lattimore was sterling from start to finish. Not only did he shut out the Chicago White Sox on six hits, he supplied a good deal of the Naps offense, going 3-for-4 with a run scored in Cleveland’s 5-0 victory. Sportswriter Bang opined that the Naps had “unearthed a real find in ‘Texas Bill’ Lattimore,” and praised the hurler’s “work with the ash” on his own behalf.23 But not all commentators were impressed with the complete game whitewash. “Young Lattimore did not appear to have much besides perfect control,” sniffed the Erie (Pennsylvania) Times. “His spitter did not break to an appreciable extent and he did not come close to striking out any of the Sox hitters. But he got the ball over whenever he wanted to, which was almost constantly, and his support did the rest.”24 Meanwhile, hometown sports reporter Edwards fumed about the pace of Lattimore’s pitching. “Ordinarily, the Texan likes about half a day to pitch a game. When he can count to twenty and say his prayers backwards in between pitches [Lattimore] thinks he is in a way to be fairly effective.”25 Soon thereafter, Sporting Life chimed in: “Bill Lattimore is likely to be known as ‘Slothful Bill.’ He is almost twice as slow as Joe Doyle of New York.”26

After being held out of action for more than two weeks, Lattimore was a different pitcher when he took the mound against the New York Highlanders on May 13. Touched for four runs in the first two innings, Bill was lifted in favor of Charlie Chech with the Naps trailing, 4-0, and charged with the eventual 7-2 loss. Lattimore was then held out for another two weeks, a stretch of idleness punctuated only by a trip to the White House during a three-game visit to Washington. There, Lattimore was acknowledged by President Theodore Roosevelt, who aptly observed, “You’re from Texas” as he shook hands with the awed young pitcher.27

Staked to an early 2-0 lead against Washington the next day, Lattimore promptly allowed the Senators to tie the score in the second. He then settled down and pitched two scoreless frames, only to be driven from the hill by a six-run Washington outburst in the fifth. Lattimore had only just turned 24 years old, and the 8-2 defeat marked the close of a major league pitching career that seemed so promising only a month earlier. In four games, he posted a 1-2 record, with a 4.50 ERA in 24 innings pitched. Over that span, he allowed 24 base hits and seven walks, while striking out five. One bright spot was his hitting: a (4-for-9) .444 career batting average, with two RBIs and a run scored. He also handled his five fielding chances flawlessly.

Shortly after the unhappy outing in Washington, Lattimore was placed on waivers by the Naps. No other major league club had interest in the lefthander, but Bill Armour was anxious to have him return to Toledo.28 And once the 10-day waiver period expired, Armour got his wish, with Lattimore unconditionally sold to Toledo “for a paltry sum.”29 In his first game back with the Mud Hens, Lattimore vindicated Armour’s judgment, tossing a three-hit, five-strikeout complete-game victory over the Minneapolis Millers.30 The next time out, however, he suffered a split finger on his pitching hand during a 4-3 loss to the Kansas City Blues, and was sidelined for a time thereafter. Lattimore was less effective upon his return to action. He finished the season with a 10-7 (.588) record, surrendering 152 hits in 159 innings, striking out 55 and walking 33. He also batted .257 (18-for-70)31 for the fourth-place (81-72, .529) Mud Hens.

As the 1909 season approached, Armour was once again “counting on southpaw Texas Lattimore.”32 But Lattimore soon proved a handful for club management. He began the season smartly, setting down the Louisville Colonels on three hits in a 3-1 victory. But soon Lattimore took to breaking training and ignoring new Mud Hens manager Fred Abbott. Then, in the dining room of a Columbus hotel, he got into a heated confrontation with a black waiter who took umbrage at the Texan’s tableside manners and fired a water pitcher at his head. It missed, but almost struck second baseman Harry Hinchman’s “think tank” instead.33 Later, Lattimore got into a fight with young Mud Hens shortstop (and future Hall of Fame manager) Joe McCarthy while the club was in Milwaukee.

When reports of further team misbehavior reached Armour, he decided disciplinary action was required. He started by making an example of miscreant-in-chief Lattimore, who was fined $100 and placed on indefinite suspension.34 Lattimore’s response was to jump the club and head home for Texas, declaring that he was “through with the national pastime as a profession.”35 Armour then released the AWOL hurler to the AA Louisville Colonels for the $750 waiver price.36 According to the Detroit Times, Toledo fans were “glad to see ‘Texas’ go. Although Bill is regarded as one of the best lefthanders in the American Association, he has persistently and consistently broken all known training rules since he joined Toledo.”37 At the time of his Toledo farewell, Lattimore’s record stood at 6-8 (.429) in 15 games.

As predicted in the press, Lattimore refused to report to Louisville.38 With his whereabouts unknown, Louisville subsequently sold Lattimore’s contact to the Topeka Jayhawks of the Class A Western League.39 But Topeka had no more luck getting Lattimore into harness than Louisville had had. The only pitching that Texas Bill did for the rest of the 1909 season was for a semipro team in Bonham, Texas.40 Otherwise, he kept himself busy working at a large wholesale grocery store opened in Paris by older brother John.41

For reasons undiscovered, Lattimore was restored to eligibility notwithstanding his suspension by Toledo and refusal to report to either Louisville or Topeka during the 1909 season. Although not yet in game shape, in mid-May 1910 he signed to play for the Fort Worth Panthers of the Class C Texas League.42 As he had during his initial pro seasons, Lattimore served as a fill-in first baseman as well as a pitcher. But hurling remained his primary job, and he threw several gems for the Panthers, including a 1-0 no-hitter against the Oklahoma City Mets in late August.43 In the opinion of one observer, “Bill Lattimore has done as much, if not more, than any other man on the team to pitch Fort Worth into first place.”44 In reality, however, he was no more than a reliable fourth starter behind Panthers stalwarts Sandy Burk (25-12), Reeve McKay (22-12), and Charlie Weatherford (13-11). Lattimore finished the year at 13-10 (.565), with 117 strikeouts and a sparkling 0.908 WHIP in 195 innings pitched for-fourth place (75-63, .543) Fort Worth.

And with that, the professional playing career of the 26-year-old Texan was over. In circuits ranging from Class A to D, he had compiled a respectable 48-35 (.578) minor league log. He also chipped in a .226 lifetime batting average in 138 minor league games, total.

Over the winter, Thompson & Lattimore, a retail clothing business in which Bill was junior partner, opened in Paris. Its success sealed the end of Lattimore’s ball-playing days. Periodic reports that the still-young (only 27) lefthander would return to Fort Worth were met with steadfast denial. “Tell the boys in Fort Worth I won’t be back — my arm is gone,” said Lattimore. At most, he might do some “twirling” with Paris’s semipro nine.45

Later that year, Bill took local bookstore saleslady Grace George as his bride. The couple’s only child, daughter Sarah Frances, was born in September 1912. By that time, Lattimore had made an odd re-entrance into Organized Baseball. In July, he became the third president of the fledgling Class D South Central League, a six-club Texas circuit whose members included a Paris Boosters club in which Lattimore had invested.46 The league disbanded shortly thereafter, and efforts to revive it over the ensuing winter were stillborn.

Still, Lattimore’s clothing business remained thriving. What failed him was his health. Sometime during the winter of 1916-1917, he contracted tuberculosis. Soon thereafter, he was obliged to abandon Texas for the rarified air of the Rockies.47 When he registered for the World War I military draft, Lattimore listed his occupation as “health seeker” without employment.48

William Hershel Lattimore died from pneumonia and other complications of tuberculosis in Colorado Springs, Colorado, on October 30, 1919.49 He was 35. His remains were subsequently returned home to Texas and interred in Evergreen Cemetery, Paris. Survivors included widow Grace, daughter Sarah, father Joseph and stepmother Mary, and his seven full siblings.50

 

Acknowledgments

This biography was reviewed by Rory Costello and Norman Macht and checked for accuracy by SABR’s fact-checking team.

 

Sources

Sources for the biographical information provided herein include the Bill Lattimore file maintained at the Giamatti Research Center, National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, Cooperstown, New York; the Lattimore profile by Frank Russo in The Cooperstown Chronicles: Baseball’s Colorful Characters, Unusual Lives, and Strange Demises (Lanham, Maryland: Rowman & Littlefield, 2014); US Census data and other government record info accessed via Ancestry.com, and certain of the newspaper articles cited in the endnotes. Unless otherwise specified, stats have been taken from Baseball-Reference.

 

Notes

1 The other Lattimore children were John (born 1873), Robert (1877), Ella (1879), Samuel (1882), Aubrey (1885), Roy (1890), and D. Daniel (1893).

2 Horace H. Shelton, “Texas League Baseball Notes,” El Paso Herald, August 9, 1910: 7.

3 Lattimore was sometimes referred to as Big Bill. See e.g., Chicago Tribune, April 9, 1907: 6; (Little Rock) Arkansas Democrat, May 1, 1909: 5; Austin (Texas) Statesman, June 14, 1910: 3.

4 “Hope 10, Prescott, 0,” Dallas Morning News, August 19, 1905: 12. No stats were discovered for the 1905 North Texas League.

5 As reported in “President of the League,” Dallas Morning News, November 26, 1905: 6, and “For Six Club League,” Dallas Morning News, December 3, 1905: 28.

6 “Webb City 3, Leavenworth, 2,” Topeka (Kansas) State Journal, August 15, 1906: 3.

7 “News Notes,” Sporting Life, March 9, 1907: 13.

8 “News Notes,” Sporting Life, March 30, 1907: 13.

9 Ed F. Bang, “Cleveland Chat,” Sporting Life, April 11, 1908: 3. See also, “American League Notes in Brief, Cincinnati Post, September 17, 1907: 7, and “Sports Here and There,” San Antonio Light, September 29, 1907: 8. In 239 innings-pitched in 1907, Lattimore reportedly threw only two wild pitches. See the Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 29, 1907: 22. Another report asserted, improbably, that Latimore “once pitched 14 consecutive games without issuing a pass.” See “New Nap Southpaw,” Pittsburg Press, September 8, 1907: 20.

10 Strikeout totals for the 1907 Toledo Mud Hens pitchers have been taken from the 1908 Reach Official Guide, 173. Baseball-Reference does not provide this stat.

11 “Work of Pitchers,” Milwaukee Journal, October 4, 1907: 11. Applying an early form of metric analysis, the Journal concluded that “taking all the departments of the game as a basis, Lattimore of Toledo has the best general record, with [Jerry] Upp of Columbus a very close second.” In individual categories, Lattimore was found to have held hitters to the lowest opponents’ batting average recorded for AA pitchers.

12 Chech and West had reached the majors in 1905, while Sutthoff’s big leagues experience dated from 1901.

13 “Watching the Toledo Players,” Topeka State Journal, August 14, 1907: 3. Club boss Armour also received multiple major league offers for Charlie Chech.

14 Ed F. Bang, “Cleveland Chat,” Sporting Life, September 7, 1907: 7.

15 “Most Drafted Ballplayer, Every Big League Club Wanted Bill Lattimore,” Evansville (Indiana) Press, September 10, 1907: 3; “Everybody Tried To Get Bill Lattimore,” Cincinnati Post, September 11, 1907: 7.

16 Ed F. Bang, “Cleveland Chat,” Sporting Life, September 7, 1907: 7.

17 “Recruits Who May Strengthen the Naps in the Season of 1908,” Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 8, 1907: 18.

18 “Naps Open with a No-Hit Contest,” Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 14, 1908: 6.

19 “Great Work by Bill Lattimore,” Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 14, 1908: 8.

20 “Hitting Pitchers Very Scarce; A Big Asset to Big Ball Clubs,” Cincinnati Post, April 29, 1908: 6, which also cited Cleveland staff ace Addie Joss as a competent batsman.

21 “Gossip of the Sports,” Altoona (Pennsylvania) Morning Tribune, June 20, 1908: 10, and “Naps Sell Exploded Wonder,” Elyria (Ohio) Evening Telegram, June 25, 1908: 4.

22 “Slow Pitchers Leaving American League,” Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 15, 1909: 6.

23 Ed F. Bang, “Cleveland Chat,” Sporting Life, May 9, 1908: 3.

24 “Cleveland 5, Chicago, 0,” Erie (Pennsylvania) Times, April 24, 1908: 11.

25 Henry F. Edwards, “Put Time Limit on Lattimore,” Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 24, 1908: 6.

26 “American League Notes,” Sporting Life, May 2, 1908: 11. The Slothful Bill gibe was subsequently re-printed in various newspapers, and modern works on baseball nicknames often include mention of Slothful Bill Lattimore. In actuality, the moniker had little traction in the baseball press of Lattimore’s time. In that nickname-besotted era, he was usually called Texas Bill, Tex, or Latty instead.

27 “Hickman Takes the Naps to White House To Call on the President,” Cleveland Plain Dealer, May 28, 1908: 8. The White House visit was arranged by teammate Charlie Hickman, only recently a member of the Washington Senators, and included a greeting by Secretary of State (later President) William Howard Taft.

28 “Hopes To Get Lattimore Back,” Chicago Tribune, June 11, 1908: 13; “Wants Lattimore,” Port Huron (Michigan) Times, June 11, 1908: 9.

29 “Gossip of the Sports,” Altoona Morning Tribune, June 20, 1908: 10. See also, “Lattimore Back to Toledo,” Louisville Courier-Journal, June 18, 1908: 12; “Gossip for Baseball Fans,” Washington Herald, June 21, 1908: 30.

30 “‘Wild Bill’ Lattimore Corrals Local Band of Ball Punchers,” Minneapolis Tribune, June 20, 1908: 8.

31 1908 American Association stats published in the 1909 Reach Official Guide, 189, 193.

32 “Managers Have a Tough Task,” Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 7, 1909: 2C.

33 Al Howell in “Toledo Topics,” Sporting Life, May 22, 1909: 14. See also, the Stillwell (Oklahoma) Mirror, June 3, 1909: 5.

34 “Armour Fines Players,” Cleveland Plain Dealer, June 27, 1909: 18.

35 “Bill Lattimore Has Quit National Pastime,” Ann Arbor (Michigan) News, July 2, 1909: 10; “Fine Fan Fodder for the Hungry Baseball Rooters,” Louisville Courier-Journal, July 16, 1909: 7.

36 “American League Notes,” Sporting Life, July 31, 1909: 15. See also, “Armour Has $750 and Louisville a Claim,” Kansas City Star, July 15, 1909: 10, re-printing an item published in the Toledo News-Bee that maintained that baseball law entitled Armour to keep the $750 waiver price obtained from Louisville for Lattimore, and that the onus was on Louisville to get the recalcitrant hurler into a Colonels uniform.

37 “Lattimore Moves On,” Detroit Times, July 6, 1909: 4.

38 “Condensed Dispatches,” Sporting Life, July 10, 1909: 2; “Baseball Gossip,” Paterson (New Jersey) Morning Call, July 16, 1909: 3.

39 “Gets A New Pitcher,” Topeka State Journal, August 2, 1909: 7. See also, “Western League Notes,” Topeka State Journal, August 6, 1909: 2.

40 “Tie Game at Bonham,” Dallas Morning News, August 1, 1909: 29.

41 “Fantastic Fancies,” Fort Worth Star-Telegram, July 25, 1909: 5; “American Association Notes,” Sporting Life, July 31, 1909: 15.

42 “Southpaw Is Added in Bill Lattimore,” Fort Worth Star-Telegram, May 18, 1910: 9; Horace H. Shelton, “With the Texas League Players,” El Paso Herald, May 23, 1910: 6.

43 Other outstanding Lattimore efforts included a two-hit, 1-0 loss to San Antonio (August 5) and an 11-strikeout, 12-0 shutout of Shreveport (August 25).

44 Horace H. Shelton, “Texas League Notes,” El Paso Herald, July 21, 1910: 6.

45 “‘My Arm Is Gone,’ Says Latty,” Fort Worth Star-Telegram, March 13, 1911: 8. See also, “Latty Denies Report,” Fort Worth Star-Telegram, May 25, 1911: 8.

46 “Bill Lattimore Heads South Central Now,” Houston Post, July 12, 1912: 4.

47 Baseball-Reference mistakenly lists Bill Lattimore as the first of two managers for the 1916 Topeka Savages of the Western League. The “Bill” Lattimore in question was actually incumbent Topeka second baseman Ralph Lattimore, a minor league journeyman whose pro career dated back to 1906.

48 Per the WWI draft registration card completed by William Hershel Lattimore, accessible on-line via Ancestry.com.

49 Per the death certificate in the Bill Latimore file at the Giamatti Research Center.

50 Younger half-brother James Lattimore had died the previous March at age 14.

Full Name

William Hershel Lattimore

Born

May 25, 1884 at Roxton, TX (USA)

Died

October 30, 1919 at Colorado Springs, CO (USA)

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