From SABR member Ryan Whirty at Home Plate Don’t Move on June 6, 2019, with SABR member James Brunson III:
Ryan Whirty: This obviously was a massive undertaking. How long did it take you, and where do you even start with a project this big?
James Brunson: I am academically trained as an art historian and visual culture specialist who integrates high art and popular art into the history of 19th century black baseball.
My project began in 1985 or 1986, depending on how one views it. In 1985, I was researching subject matter for a series of paintings. Reading microfilm, I came across a story on Isaac Carter, a ballplayer for the St. Louis Black Stockings in 1883. Carter was shot and killed in 1884, by a man who claimed he was a burglar (the story is much more complicated). This story piqued my interest. I photocopied the page and filed it away.
In 1986, my family made its annual Memorial Day pilgrimage to St. Louis. Time was set aside to do research at the Olive Street downtown library. Eerily, the home connected to Carter’s death was on Olive Street. I photocopied everything I could about the St. Louis Black Stockings. Currently, I have two notebooks on them, at least three inches in thickness. I came across more St. Louis teams, and photocopied their stories.
Read the full article here: https://homeplatedontmove.wordpress.com/2019/06/06/new-19th-century-chronicle-a-labor-of-love/
Originally published: June 6, 2019. Last Updated: June 6, 2019.