Full Count Vintage Baseball Card Forum
Would you like to react to this message? Create an account in a few clicks or log in to continue.

History of team nicknames

2 posters

Go down

History of team nicknames Empty History of team nicknames

Post by sabrjay Wed Jan 02, 2008 8:25 pm

Here is a neat article from the October 1898 Sporting News that was posted on the 19cBB list:

It is a little odd how nicknames become attached to base ball teams and
stick for years, though the original causes for the assignment of the
names may have so completely vanished to be beyond the memory of nay
but the oldest devotees of the game. Many of the names in use are well
and aptly applied, while others are without wit or point.

The Chicago team was for years known as the Colts because of the
displacement of the veteran members of the team by youngsters in the
80's, when the Chicagos were so successful under "Pop" Anson, "Silver"
Flint, John Clarkson, Corcoran, Fred Pfeffer, Tom Burns (the team's
present manager), Ned Williamson, George Gore, Mike Kelly, et. al
constituted the team. They were all veterans, and by degrees were
ousted and younger men put in to fill their positions......When Burns
got in control he petitioned the cranks for a new name, and that of
"Orphans", suggested by the retirement of "Pop" Anson, was thought to
be the most appropriate, and was selected.

The New York team is best known in base ball circles as the "Giants".
This name was given them when Gore, Ewing, Keefe, "Big Bill" Brown,
Gillespie, Dorgan, Esterbrook and other ball players were members of
the team, and also because they were big in a base ball sense. Their
slogan for years was "We are the people", and when the real giants
comprised the team, they made their slogan good.

The Washington team has always borne the name of "Senators" on account
of the city they represent being the capital of the country. The team
has never been known by any other name, and most probably never will
be, as it exists in a lazy harmless way, never cutting enough figure in
the game to awaken the interest of those active in giving new

The Philadelphia team has never had any other name save that of
"Phillies" or "Quakers". The first name was allotted them on account of
the abbreviation of the name of the city they represent, and the second
on account of Quakers being the original inhabitants of the
Pennsylvania city.

The St. Louis team has always been called the Browns, a name given them
when it made its entry in the base ball world, on account of the color
of the stockings worn by its players. Since the team has been on the
incline it has been known at different times as "Misfits", "Rough
Riders", Hurst's "Hoo-doos", Hurst's "Hoboes" and a number of other not
particularly pleasing titles.

Everything and everybody is a Colonel in Louisville. The city's base
ball team is no exception to the rule, and ever since it has been
represented in the old association and present league it has been
called the "Colonels". Sporting writers of the Kentucky city have tried
at different times to give the team some other title, but the name of
"Colonels" has been a hard one to displace and sticks to the team this
season, as of yore.

The B [sic] team were saddled with the nickname of "Pirates" in 1890,
when J. Palmer O'Neil, president of the club at the time, stole "Looie"
Bierbauer from the Athletic (American Association) team, and pirated
several players. This action on O'Neil's part precipitated the
League-Association fight and induced other players to "jump" the
Association which died the following year. ....This team has been
called the "Patroits" [sic!] by by Pittsburg sporting writers this year
in order to escape the odium of their nickname, but the new name has
failed to make an impression.

The Cleveland teams was for years dubbed all over the base ball map as
the "Spiders" on account of the spiderlike appearance of the players in
skin-tight uniforms years ago. When [Louis] Sockalexis left Holy Cross
College, where he had made fame as a base ball player and signed with
Tebeau, the Cleveland scribes dubbed their team the "Indians". Since
their games have been transferred to foreign soil on account of lack of
attendance at games played in the Forest City, the team has most often
been referred to as "Wanderers", "Tourists", or "Tramps".

The Cincinnati team has for years been known as the "Reds", a sobriquet
fastened on them many seasons ago on account of the color of their
hose. They are also known as "Quitters" for not being able to stand the
pace, leading the field season after season for about two-thirds of the
route and collapsing at the end like a punctured balloon. They remained
in the van longer than ever this season, and for a long time had an
equal chance with Boston and Baltimore for championship honors. The
"Reds" are referred to in certain quarters as "Buck's Braves", since,
Ewing, whose nickname is "Buck", became their manager.

The sobriquet of "Bridegrooms" has been allied with the Brooklyn team
for years. They earned the title by the marriage of half a dozen or
more members of the team during a very brief space of time. When the
trolley car system was first introduced in Brooklyn fatalities were
daily, if not hourly, occurrences, and the team is often referred to by
the more humorous scribes as "Trolley Dodgers".

It has always been the "Reds" or "Bean-eaters" with the Boston team.
When the club first entered the National League the color of red was
assigned to it for the trimming of its uniforms and stockings. They
were at once dubbed the "Reds", and the title has stuck to them ever
since. They are equally as well known as the "Bean-eaters", given them
for the alleged fondness of Bostonians for baked beans. They go by the
name of Chamipons this season, for winning the pennant from the
Baltimores last season and they have earned that tile once more.

The Baltimore team is most often referred to as "Orioles" and
"Birdies", two names they fell heir to on account of Baltimore being
the home of the oriole. By winning the league pennat three times in
succession in 1894, 1895,1896, they were dubbed the "Three Timers".

Posts : 7818
Trader Points :
History of team nicknames Left_bar_bleue25 / 10025 / 100History of team nicknames Right_bar_bleue


Back to top Go down

History of team nicknames Empty Re: History of team nicknames

Post by ItsOnlyGil Wed Jan 09, 2008 2:10 am

Reportedly, feeling burdened by the eleven letters in the Highlanders name, the Sports Editor of the New York Press, Jim Price, called the team: Yankees. "Preferring the breezy seven letters to the cumbersome eleven of Highlanders".
The feeling at that time was that the team's existing name was not very Americanized.
This was just prior to Col. Ruppert getting involved with them.

Posts : 1145
Trader Points :
History of team nicknames Left_bar_bleue2 / 1002 / 100History of team nicknames Right_bar_bleue

Back to top Go down

Back to top

- Similar topics

Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum