Claunch: Rare baseball find: a photo of Stars Park in St. Louis

From Amanda Claunch at the Missouri History Museum on October 26, 2016:

Walloping bats and roaring fans were commonplace at the intersection of Compton and Market back in the 1920s thanks to Stars Park, home to the Negro National League (NNL) franchise the St. Louis Stars. Originally called the St. Louis Giants, the team got new owners, a new name, and a brand-new ballpark in 1922. At the time, Stars Park was one of few facilities in the country built especially for a Negro League team, and the Stars played there until the NNL went out of business in 1931, a casualty of the Great Depression. Yet few, if any, photos of the 10,000-seat stadium were known to exist—until now.

While going through some unidentified negatives in our Swekosky Notre Dame College Collection, photo archivist Lauren Sallwasser came across an image of a large ballpark exterior. Initially she thought it was Sportsman’s Park, but after comparing it to another photo, she realized they weren’t a match. Neither a clear sign stating the park’s name nor a helpful street sign that could give a clue to the ballpark’s location was present. But there was a small banner nailed to the building, hanging loose on one side and only partially legible. In the lower corner of it you can just make out the words Stars Park.

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Originally published: October 27, 2016. Last Updated: October 27, 2016.