Ed Kenna

This article was written by Phil Williams

One might think Ed Kenna was a genteel soul who overachieved in his baseball life by appearing in two games with the Philadelphia Athletics in 1902. After all, the “poet pitcher” was a well-educated son of a US senator who authored two volumes of verse.1 Yet for years after his Philadelphia stint, Kenna starred in the high minors and impressed onlookers as being a major-league talent. But he was too often his own worst enemy or fell victim to misfortune. Kenna found maturity in his post-baseball life as he served his native city of Charleston, West Virginia, as a newspaper editor. But for an early death at age 34, he was perhaps destined to follow in his father’s footsteps.

Edward Benninghaus Kenna was born on October 17, 1877, in Charleston, the county seat of Kanawha County. He was the first of six children born to John and Annie (Benninghaus) Kenna.2 His father was born in Kanawha County in 1848, when it was part of Virginia.3 After John’s father died in 1856, his mother moved her young family to Missouri. John worked the family farm, then, at 16, joined the Confederate Army, serving in General Joseph O. Shelby’s forces.4Among the friends he made in this youth: the outlaw Jesse James.5

After the Civil War, John Kenna returned to Kanawha County and studied law. In 1870 the state repealed oaths enacted immediately after the Civil War to disenfranchise former Confederates. These voters allowed West Virginia’s Democrats to “redeem” the state from Reconstruction.6 John Kenna rose quickly in the party ranks, elected as Kanawha County attorney in 1872, to the US House of Representatives in 1876, and to the US Senate in 1882. In Washington, he championed West Virginia internal improvements and battled Republican tariffs. Yet Kenna’s health deteriorated, and he died from heart disease in January 1893.

Senator Kenna left his young family with little more than a $10,000 life insurance policy.7 Democratic President Grover Cleveland appointed his widow as Charleston’s postmistress.8 These means undoubtedly helped the family’s eldest son, Edward, to continue his education. In these endeavors, athletics played a prominent role. At Mount St. Mary’s College in Emmitsburg, Maryland, Ed captained the football team and was the baseball nine’s star pitcher before graduating in 1898. Then he moved onto graduate work at Georgetown University. He shot put for their track and field team, played fullback, punted, and kicked for their football squad, and twirled and patrolled right field for Hoya baseball. Led by Kenna and Doc White, Georgetown’s 1899 baseball team was considered the strongest collegiate nine in the nation.9

Eligibility requirements varied considerably among colleges in this era. By pitching for Washington area semipro teams after the Hoyas’ season concluded, Kenna was seemingly barred from further participation in Georgetown’s athletics.10That fall he joined the faculty of Horner Military School in Oxford, North Carolina.11 He captained their football team then, the next spring, starred on the diamond for them, with a Raleigh sportswriter labeling him “easily the best college twirler in the state.”12 Once the 1900 Horner baseball season concluded, he made his professional debut with the North Carolina Association’s Statesville outfit. A Charlotte observer opined that “Kenna outclasses any pitcher in the league.”13 After the Association’s season concluded, Kenna moved up to Toledo of the Class-B Interstate League in September. Often rattled in faster company, he went 0-4 with the Mud Hens. That fall, he coached football at Richmond College (now the University of Richmond).14

Kenna returned to his native state in 1901. First, he pitched for and studied law at West Virginia University.15 After their spring campaign concluded, he signed with the Western Association’s Wheeling Stogies. Kenna won his first five games with the Stogies.16 Fred Knowles, the New York Giants’ team secretary, scouted Kenna in Wheeling on July 20, but after seeing the pitcher lose his first game in an error-filled affair, left without making an offer.17 Connie Mack, scurrying to find talent for the Philadelphia Athletics in their inaugural season, inquired as to Kenna’s availability.18But Wheeling’s management wasn’t interested in selling him, and the pitcher wanted to stay in West Virginia. Down the stretch, Kenna and Frank Killen were the team’s only twirlers, and worked hard.19 Wheeling finished in fourth place, with a 70-64 record. Per a contemporary source, Kenna went 17-7 with the Stogies.20

Returning to West Virginia University that fall, Kenna was elected president of the senior law class and played quarterback for the Mountaineer football team.21 In November the American League’s Cleveland Blues signed him.22Days later, he broke his shoulder on the gridiron, ending his football season.23

For some time, at least back to his Georgetown days, Kenna had been writing poetry. West Virginia served as a muse, and he spent much of his free time as a Stogie writing.24 That offseason, as his shoulder healed, he completed a volume.25Lyrics of the Hills appeared in 1902. One of its poems begins:

Huntin’ time is comin’
For the pheasants are a drummin’
And the ches’nut burrs are turnin’ on the south side of the tree;
And the “whicker, whicker, whicker,”
Of the raspin’, screamin’ flicker
Comes a driftin’ from the mountain top across the crick to me.26

Kenna was a strapping 6-foot, 180-pound right-hander. It is uncertain what shoulder he broke playing football. But at Cleveland’s 1902 spring training camp in New Orleans, he battled arm and shoulder soreness and a bout of dysentery.27He also found time to make “a world of friends since his arrival.”28 Cleveland manager Bill Armour later criticized his lack of concentration, reportedly stating, “Kenna was too busy writing verses, instead of paying attention to the national game.”29 The team released him on April 25.

Meanwhile, in Philadelphia, court injunctions upheld the National League’s reserve clause and prevented Napoleon Lajoie, who had jumped from the Phillies to the Athletics before the 1901 season, from playing in-state with Mack’s team. These injunctions affected three Athletics pitchers – Bill Bernhard, Bill Duggleby, and Chick Fraser – who had also jumped from the Phillies.30 On May 1, Mack signed Kenna.31

On May 5, after starter Snake Wiltse allowed four hits and three runs in the first inning against the visiting Senators, Mack put Kenna in. “He held Washington down to five hits, and also showed that he is something of a ‘sticker,’ smashing the ball on the nose every time he came to bat,” the Philadelphia Record observed.32 One smash resulted in a double off Washington starter Watty Lee. Another, in the seventh, put Kenna on base with a fielder’s choice. Three batters later, Harry Davis launched a three-run homer, propelling Philadelphia to a 7-5, come-from-behind, victory.

Four days later, Kenna started against visiting Baltimore. The Orioles eventually finished in the AL cellar in 1902, while the Athletics won their first pennant. But on this chilly, windy day, Baltimore pounced upon Kenna’s offerings, hit-and-run perfectly, and ran the basepaths with abandon. Regarding Philadelphia’s play: “While Kenna was easy [yielding 15 hits, eight walks, and six steals], his support was frightful and the manner in which the locals threw the ball around, got caught off bases and went to sleep was enough to make Connie Mack feel that the very air was full of injunctions,” wrote the Philadelphia Times.33 The Athletics lost, 13-6. Despite the poor play behind Kenna, Mack must have concluded that a veteran squad (Baltimore’s lineup featured John McGraw and Wilbert Robinson that day) capably executing small ball was too much for his raw recruit. He released Kenna.

Soon afterward the American Association’s Milwaukee Brewers sought to sign him. Yet, due to their inability to immediately locate Kenna and send advance money, another Milwaukee outfit – the Class-A Western League’s Creams, beat them to the punch.34 Kenna’s new team stood at 18-22 when he debuted with them on June 15. His 19-8 record helped the Creams finish the campaign with an 80-54 record, only a game off first place. Among league regulars, Kenna’s .739 winning percentage was topped only by Kansas City’s Kid Nichols (.794). Contemporary statistics suggest that no pitcher in the league allowed fewer hits (5.63) per game than Kenna, while only Omaha’s Frank Owen allowed fewer runs per game than Kenna’s 2.56.35

In 1903, pitching a full season for the Creams, Kenna went 28-9 with 186 strikeouts. In early July, Washington offered Milwaukee manager Hugh Duffy $4,000 for five of his players, including Kenna. Duffy declined, in part because the Creams were in first place (and would eventually win the pennant).36 Another factor may have been his decision to leave Milwaukee to manage the Philadelphia Phillies. By early September rumors toward this end were afoot, as was talk that Kenna would follow Duffy in signing with the Phillies.37

Simultaneously, Cincinnati Reds President Garry Herrmann, fresh from helping to broker peace between the National and American Leagues – for which he was appointed chair of baseball’s new ruling National Commission – sought to bring the sport’s minor leagues under this aegis.38 Such an agreement was signed on September 11.39 Ten days later, the Phillies drafted Kenna.40 Soon afterward, news of Duffy’s pre-draft negotiations with Philadelphia for the purchase of Kenna (and third baseman Jim Cockman) reached Herrmann. As these negotiations occurred during the Western League season, and because Duffy failed to pay the players their final checks, Herrmann awarded the two players to Milwaukee. For this action, “Mr. Herrmann was warmly congratulated by managers, players and newspaper men for his manly and sportsmanlike decision in so delicate a manner.”41

The Western League, however, abandoned Milwaukee after the 1903 campaign. Kenna signed with the circuit’s Denver Grizzlies.42 In the aftermath, Duffy stated of Kenna, “I think [he] would be as good a pitcher as there was in the country, if he took care of himself.”43

Kenna employed an underhanded “cannon-ball-like delivery.”44 From the beginning he possessed “a beautiful drop ball” that would be recalled well after his career ended.45 In addition to this (likely) curve, Kenna possessed “speed to burn” and gradually evolved into a “careful and deliberate” pitcher “who uses his head” against the opposition.46

Yet, as Duffy implied, undisciplined behavior accompanied these talents. Kenna later admitted the need to curb his drinking.47 He possessed a hot temper and, in 1901, perceived insults led him to assault an African-American at a Dayton hotel.48 In poetry, he strove to tell a maiden “I love you” in “an honest manly way.”49 In life, he was a playboy, denying a story of him being wed to a young Milwaukee woman after he arrived in Colorado, and forever flirting with female fans in the stands.50 A Denver paper noted in the midst of the 1904 season that no Western League player received more “mash notes” than Kenna. “He reads them and then passes them around among his team mates, all to have a good laugh at the expense of the foolish girl that writes them,” the paper said.51

Denver led the pennant race until the very end of the season, when Omaha and Colorado Springs overtook the Grizzlies. Kenna posted a 21-12 record and 168 strikeouts.52 Yet “Eddie constantly complained that the altitude interfered with his work” and sought to get out of Denver.53 George Tebeau owned both the Grizzlies and the American Association’s Louisville Colonels and in January 1905 traded Kenna to the Kentucky franchise. Afterward, a Denver paper struck a familiar tone: “If Kenna had taken care of himself during the season of 1904 he would have been drafted by the big leagues, and he would have made good up there.”54

In early 1905, Kenna stated that he was on the wagon and planned to return to the majors after the coming Association season ended.55 In April exhibition games against National League competition, he “pitched masterly ball” against the Giants, showed “midseason form” against the Reds, and two-hit the Pirates.56 His efforts sagged in midseason due to illness, but by late August he was back in form and attracting the interest of two unspecified American League teams.57

On August 31, after the visiting Colonels won three of four in Kansas City, the team sped back to a hotel in a horse-drawn wagon, hoping to catch a 6:15 train to Toledo. With a trolley car barreling down at them from behind, the wagon driver made a sharp turn, tipping over the vehicle and spilling its occupants. Several players were seriously injured, none more so than Kenna, who was dragged under the trolley’s fender until it came to a stop. “Kenna’s left elbow was dislocated, his left arm fractured, his nose broken, his body bruised, and his face scratched and lacerated.”58 His season was over, with a 16-13 record. Louisville finished in fourth place with a 76-75 mark.

Whether it was the lingering effects of his injuries or a failing pitching arm, Kenna never got on track in 1906, finishing the campaign with a 12-21 mark and allowing a league-high 139 walks (versus 95 strikeouts).59 By midsummer, Kenna began to play right field, and finished with a .325 average in 55 games. “I certainly will try to persuade Tebeau to let me play the outfield instead of pitch next season,” he said in December.60

Yet Kenna was back on Louisville’s mound in 1907, battling injuries and increasingly ineffective. When released by the Colonels in July, he had a 3-7 record.61 He pitched a little semipro ball in Kentucky that summer, then hung up his spikes.62 Years earlier, Kenna had flirted with newspaper work but instead committed to professional baseball.63 With this career over, he returned home and joined the Charleston Gazette as a reporter. By 1909, he became the newspaper’s editor.64

Under Kenna’s watch, the Gazette’s editorial page often engaged in boosterism befitting a small city. In 1910, the Class-D Virginia Valley League’s Charleston Senators arrived. As the season began, the Gazette told its readers,“The support of the home team is one of the best ways to make its career one of success, and the successful ball team is one of the best advertisements that a town can have.”65 By August, however, the paper turned its ire upon loud-mouthed “pinheads” in the stands: “If this brand of self-sufficient, conceited and absolutely incompetent critics would but know they are fools, then the task of the base ball booster, the base ball players and the base ball owner would be easier.”66

The Gazette’s editorial page also argued passionately for bettering Charleston’s civic life. It raised concerns over increasingly polluted local rivers and the lack of public playgrounds.67 On January 29, 1911, on behalf of the Associated Charities, a three-column editorial took readers on a detailed tour of the city’s poorest neighborhoods and the suffering within. The piece concluded, “Let it not be said that Charleston cannot look after her own. Let us bring hope to the hopeless, food to the hungry, comfort to the afflicted. These are the deeds that make men blessed.”68

Such a sense of localized responsibility was consistent with Kenna’s political ideology. Like his father, he turned to Thomas Jefferson and Andrew Jackson for guidance. “The only check against autocracy and empire, is the power of the states – the vitality and integrity of local government,” stated a February 1910 Gazette editorial.69 “Laws cannot reform men, they cannot make men better, they cannot change their point of view,” the paper argued later that year.70

The paper’s editorials sometimes treated African-Americans in bluntly racist terms.71 Yet the Gazette also forcefully denounced “the evil of lynching.”72 After Kenna’s death, Charleston’s principal black newspaper, the Advocate, graciously recognized his lack of demagoguery: “He was too kind-hearted to impose upon the weak and defenseless; too indifferent to popular acclaim to win it by ways that are dark or tricks that are vain.”73

Like his father, Kenna identified with the largely Southern-based Democrats of this era. He was passionately partisan but could also be admiring of independent Republicans on a larger stage, such as Wisconsin Senator Robert La Follette.74Indeed, as Kenna’s editorship progressed, so did his editorial page’s focus upon national politics. Although a small city, Charleston was a state capital, not an isolated backwater. Kenna increasingly considered both its, and possibly his own, ambitions within a larger scope.

His temper remained intact. Local temperance advocates, whom he considered opportunistic Republican machine politicians, particularly angered him. In 1911 the Reverend Thomas Hare, superintendent of the West Virginia anti-saloon league, brought a speaker to Charleston to promote a “dry” vote. The speaker questioned the integrity of Kenna’s late father. Kenna, who periodically went after “the ‘Reverend’ Tom” in the Gazette, decked Hare.75 The “wets” triumphed in the ballot box.

This scrap aside, Kenna was becoming a respectable member of society. In February 1910 he wed Frances Beardsley, the 21-year-old daughter of a Charleston lawyer. Democrats urged him to run for a State Senate seat soon afterward, but he declined, reportedly stating he was afraid he might win.76 West Virginia’s Republican Governor William Glasscock issued a commission adding Kenna (at least symbolically) to his staff, with the honorary rank of colonel. A son, William, arrived in 1911. In January 1912 the Mountain States League (the Senators’ new circuit) elected him its vice president.77

By that time, Kenna was in Grant, Florida, recuperating from a “nervous stomach disorder.” He gradually improved, but in mid-March was suddenly afflicted by an attack of tonsillitis.78 His health worsened quickly, and he died of heart failure on March 22. Survived by his wife and son, Ed Kenna was buried in Charleston’s Spring Hill Cemetery. Soon afterward, a second volume of his verse, much of which initially appeared in the Gazette, was published posthumously. One of its shorter poems is Trailing Arbutus:

Oh, modest flower, ’tis thine to bring
The herald perfume of the spring;
So silent death, ’tis thine to be
The herald of Eternity.79



In addition to the sources noted in this biography, the author used Kenna’s file from the National Baseball Hall of Fame, the Encyclopedia of Minor League Baseball, and the following sites: ancestry.com, genealogybank.com, and ohiocountywv.advantage-preservation.com.

The author is grateful to the staff of the West Virginia State Archives for their assistance in accessing their collection of the Charleston Gazette.



1 In his day, Kenna was nicknamed the “poet pitcher.” The “pitching poet” moniker arose posthumously. Baseball mythology may remember him as a poet who happened to pitch; his contemporaries thought him a pitcher who happened to write poetry.

2 A younger brother, John Edward (Jack), also played baseball, first playing for West Virginia University then pitching with minor-league teams in Chattanooga and Worcester, Massachusetts, from approximately 1909 to 1911.

3 Kanawha and the other counties that constitute West Virginia were part of the state of Virginia until the Civil War. Residents of the counties were generally anti-Secessionist and broke away from Virginia after it seceded from the Union. West Virginia was admitted to the Union as a state in 1863.

4 For a brief biography, see Memorial Addresses on the Life and Character of John Edward Kenna (Washington: Government Printing Office, 1893), 5-10.

5 “Kenna and Jesse James,” Clarksburg (West Virginia) Telegram, January 27, 1893: 1.

6 For background on West Virginia Reconstruction, see Ralph Mann, “Reconstruction,” e-WV: The West Virginia Encyclopedia, wvencyclopedia.org/articles/28, October 22, 2010. Accessed August 12, 2019. Also see Stephen D. Engle, “Mountaineer Reconstruction: Blacks in the Political Reconstruction of West Virginia,” The Journal of Negro History, Vol. 78, No. 3 (Summer, 1993): 137-165. Available online at tinyurl.com/yymcvl6s.

7 Weekly Register (Point Pleasant, West Virginia), February 7, 1893: 3.

8 Weekly Register, May 16, 1893: 2.

9 Henry Chadwick, ed., Spalding’s Official Base Ball Guide, Season of 1900 (New York: American Sports Publishing Company, 1900), 125-128.

10 For examples of his semipro endeavors: “Victory for the Bureaus,” Washington Times, June 18, 1899: 8; “Tarboro’s Ball Pitcher,” Wilmington(North Carolina) Messenger, July 29, 1899: 4. On Georgetown barring him, see “Gone to Pieces,” Sporting Life, September 18, 1899: 1.

11 For more on his stay at Horner, see Edward B. Kenna, ed., The Oxonian, Vol. 3, No. 4 (December 1899). Available online at tinyurl.com/y4yffrm5.

12 “It Was Horner’s Game,” Raleigh Morning Post, May 1, 1900: 2.

13 “Kenna Did It,” Charlotte News, July 5, 1900: 1.

14 “Football Team at the College,” Richmond Times, September 30, 1900: 2.

15 For references to his pitching with WVU, see “W.&J. Team Shut Out,” Pittsburgh Post, June 9, 1901: 13; “West Virginia’s New Captain,” Pittsburgh Post, June 18, 1901: 6.

16 “Young Collegian,” Cincinnati Enquirer, June 30, 1901: 10; Wheeling Daily Intelligencer, July 17, 1901: 3.

17 “Two Games,” Cincinnati Enquirer, July 21, 1901: 10; Wheeling Daily Intelligencer, July 22, 1901: 3.

18 “Pitcher Kenna,” Cincinnati Enquirer, July 24, 1901: 4.

19 “Pitcher Kenna,” Cincinnati Enquirer, August 14, 1901: 4.

20 “Notice Served on Kenna,” Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 26, 1902: 4.

21 Wheeling Daily Intelligencer, October 19, 1901: 3.

22 “Kenna to Pitch for Cleveland,” Baltimore Sun, November 14, 1901: 6.

23 “Kenna Is Out of the Game,” Pittsburgh Post, November 16, 1901: 6.

24 “Baseball Gossip,” Cincinnati Enquirer, February 4, 1902: 4. Notably, as a poet, Kenna never wrote of baseball.

25 Wheeling Daily Intelligencer, November 20, 1901: 3.

26 Edward B. Kenna, Lyrics of the Hills (Morgantown, West Virginia: Acme Publishing Co., 1902): 33.

27 “With the Leaguers at Athletic Park,” New Orleans Picayune, April 4, 1902: 8; Ginger [pseud.], “Pelicans Beaten,” The Sporting News, April 12, 1902: 6; “Bradley Again in the Game,” Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 12, 1902: 6.

28 Ginger [pseud.], “Wright Was Wild,” The Sporting News, April 5, 1902: 6.

29 “Around the Park,” New Orleans Picayune, May 3, 1902: 8.

30 For a discussion of these court rulings, see Norman Macht, Connie Mack and the Early Years of Baseball (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 2007), 264-269.

31 “Baseball Gossip,” Washington Times, May 1, 1902: 4.

32 “Timely Home Run Drive,” Philadelphia Record, May 6, 1902: 11.

33 “A Weird Exhibition,” Philadelphia Times, May 10, 1902: 10. Also see “Win a Game at Last,” Baltimore Sun, May 10, 1902: 6.

34 “A Little Mix-Up,” Sporting Life, June 28, 1902: 15.

35 Francis C. Richter, ed., Reach’s Official American League Base Ball Guide, for 1903 (Philadelphia: A.J. Reach Co., 1903), 198.

36 “American League Notes,” Sporting Life, July 11, 1903: 9.

37 “Phillies Get Kenna,” Minneapolis Journal, September 5, 1903: 8.

38 J. Ed Grillo, “Is Not Worrying,” The Sporting News, September 5, 1903: 1.

39 J. Ed Grillo, “Slight Changes,” The Sporting News, September 19, 1903: 1.

40 “The Commission’s First Work,” Sporting Life, September 26, 1903: 4.

41 “Draft of Minor League Stars,” Cincinnati Enquirer, October 27, 1903: 4.

42 “Milwaukee Pitcher Signed with Denver,” Pittsburgh Press, November 21, 1903: 10.

43 “Tips by the Managers,” The Sporting News, December 12, 1903: 2.

44 “Lost to the Misfit Team,” Toledo Bee, September 7, 1900: 6. On his delivery being underhanded: “Colonels Open the Season with a Splendid Victory Over St. Paul Club,” Louisville Courier-Journal, April 20, 1905: 6.

45 “Baseball,” Norfolk Virginian-Pilot, July 30, 1899: 15; “Only Three Years Off Toledo Sand Lots, ‘Doc’ Watson Is Major League Prospect,” Pittsburgh Press, December 7, 1912: 8.

46 “Field of Sports,” Wheeling Daily Intelligencer, August 9, 1901: 3; “Denver Wins Two Games,” Denver Post, September 5, 1904: 11; Frank E. Force, “Opinions,” Minneapolis Tribune, August 27, 1905: 39.

47 Brownie [pseud.], “Rough Treatment from the Fans,” Milwaukee Journal, April 27, 1905: 9.

48 “Out of the Game,” Dayton Daily News, September 21, 1901: 2.

49 Edward B. Kenna, Lyrics of the Hills (Morgantown, West Virginia: Acme Publishing Co., 1902), 68.

50 The report of him being wed to Miss Victoria Towell: Racine (Wisconsin) Daily Journal, March 24, 1904: 8. His denial: Brownie [pseud.], “Rough Treatment from the Fans,” Milwaukee Journal, April 27, 1905: 9. An example of his flirting: “Colonels Now in Last Place,” Louisville Courier-Journal, May 22, 1907: 6.

51 Otto Floto, “Eminently Fitting,” Denver Post, August 1, 1904: 7.

52 Henry Chadwick, ed., Spalding’s Official Base Ball Guide, 1905 (New York: American Sports Publishing Company, 1905), 197.

53 Otto Floto, “Dan Patch Is Going into Winter Quarters After a Very Successful Advertising Season,” Denver Post, November 15, 1904: 11.

54 “Fans Do Not Like the Trade,” Louisville Courier-Journal, February 10, 1905: 6. [Note this article quotes a Denver Times sportswriter at length.

55 Brownie [pseud.], “Rough Treatment from the Fans,” Milwaukee Journal, April 27, 1905: 9; “New Pitchers in Good Shape,” Louisville Courier-Journal, March 21, 1905: 6.

56 “Giants Twirlers in Rare Form,” Louisville Courier-Journal, April 3, 1905: 6; “The Colonels Win with Ease,” Louisville Courier-Journal, April 7, 1905: 6; “The Game at Louisville,” Pittsburgh Post, April 13, 1905: 11.

57 “Even Break in Doubleheader,” Louisville Courier-Journal, July 5, 1905: 6; “Boston After Clay,” Minneapolis Journal, August 26, 1905: 24.

58 “Kenna’s Condition Improved,” Kansas City Star, September 1, 1905: 7. See also “Pitcher Kenna Seems Better,” Louisville Courier-Journal, September 2, 1905: 10.

59 Francis C. Richter, ed., Reach’s Official American League Base Ball Guide, 1907 (Philadelphia: A.J. Reach Co., 1907), 156.

60 “Kenna Retires as a Pitcher,” Louisville Courier-Journal, December 22, 1906: 9.

61 “The American Association,” Sporting Life, December 14, 1907: 9; “Condensed Dispatches,” Sporting Life, July 27, 1907: 2.

62 “Bardstown 10, Bowling Green 0,” Louisville Courier-Journal, July 19, 1907: 6.

63 “Locals,” Observer (Concord, North Carolina), August 16, 1900: 3.

64 For background of his association with the Gazette, see “Col. Edward B. Kenna Dies Suddenly of Heart Failure,” Charleston Gazette, March 23, 1912: 1, 6. It is unclear when in 1909 he became editor. No editor was listed on the paper’s editorial page that year. By early 1910, Kenna is.

65 “The Ball Season Opens,” Charleston Gazette, May 4, 1910: 4.

66 “Foolish Knocking,” Charleston Gazette, August 24, 1910: 4.

67 “The Need for Playgrounds,” Charleston Gazette, April 8, 1910: 4; “Where Is the End,” Charleston Gazette, April 8, 1910: 4.

68 “Succor to the Needy,” Charleston Gazette, January 29, 1911: 4.

69 “Democratic Opportunity,” Charleston Gazette, February 1, 1910: 4.

70 “Rum and Reform,” Charleston Gazette, December 1, 1910: 4.

71 For example: “A Pathetic Fallacy,” Charleston Gazette, December 24, 1910: 4.

72 “Congratulations,” Charleston Gazette, August 18, 1910: 4.

73 “Edward B. Kenna,” Charleston Advocate, March 28, 1912: 5.

74 “La Follette for President,” Charleston Gazette, June 20, 1911: 4. Despite this editorial’s title, one suspects that Kenna would have supported Woodrow Wilson in the 1912 race. The Gazette’s editorial page argued that Taft was too weak to rise above Republican Party brokers and that Roosevelt had dangerously consolidated the federal government’s powers during his presidency. Toward a Wilson speech in December 1910, the Gazette suggested, “There is nothing of the New Nationalism nor centralization, nor paternalism, in it.” See “Wilson’s Sanity,” Charleston Gazette, December 17, 1910: 4.

75 For Kenna’s contempt for Hare, see Charleston Gazette, January 28, 1911: 4. For their scrap, see John C. Bond, “Wets Win,” Wheeling Daily Intelligencer, June 3, 1911: 1.

76 John C. Bond, “Democrats Prepare to Make Fight in Kanawha,” Wheeling Daily Intelligencer, June 2, 1910: 3.

77 “Latest News by Telegraph Briefly Told,” Sporting Life, February 3, 1912: 2.

78 “Col. Edward B. Kenna Dies Suddenly of Heart Failure,” Charleston Gazette, March 23, 1912: 1, 6.

79 Edward Benninghaus Kenna, Songs of the Open Air and Other Poems (Charleston, West Virginia: Tribune Printing Co., 1912), 43.

Full Name

Edward Benninghaus Kenna


October 17, 1877 at Charleston, WV (USA)


March 22, 1912 at Grant, FL (USA)

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