If you have a passion for baseball, then here is an invitation for summer fun in Flint. Lumber City Vintage Base Ball Club is ready to step to the plate for their fourth season. For the past few years, Flint’s historical baseball team has taken to field withover 30 teams all over Michigan. Each team dresses in period uniforms, uses replica equipment, and plays by rules of the 1860s to recreate the earliest days of America’s past time. This year, Lumber City will be hosting two tournaments on their field at the University of Michigan-Flint. The Stockton Cup, named for Flint’s Colonel Thomas B. Stockton will showcase four clubs playing for the trophy on May 21. On June 11, the team will host the Carriagetown Classic in a “Gatling-gun” style tournament where three teams compete in a single game. The remaining home games are select Saturdays. Most games begin at 2:00 pm with earlier start times for tournaments. You can see the full schedule by visiting the Whaley House website www.whaleyhouse.com
The team is sponsored by the University of Michigan-Flint Department of History and the Whaley Historic House Museum. Spectators get to see more than an authentic competition. During the game, Thomas. Henthorn, Wyatt Professor of U.S. History, treats the crowd with interesting stories about the history of the sport and why Americans took to the game in the nineteenth century. “Our history department is always trying to come up with unique ways to engage the community with history,” remarked Henthorn. The team also serves as part of the outreach programming for the Whaley Historic House Museum. The Museum is currently being restored from damage by a fire on November 30, 2015. “The baseball team has been a very successful way for use to reach people offsite,” said Samantha Engel, the museum’s director. “This year, the team will help remind people that the museum is still busy promoting history, even though the house itself is being repaired.”
For fans who think they may want to do more than watch, the Lumber City team is looking to add players to its roster. “Anyone is welcome to join,” said Henthorn. “We even have special incentives for University of Michigan-Flint students.” Prospective players must be at least eighteen years of age and do not have to be associated with the university to be members. Practices have already begun with a special scrimmage match and information session scheduled for April 16 at 1:00 pm at the University of Michigan-Flint. Anyone wishing to join should contact Prof. Thomas Henthorn at the University of Michigan-Flint. 810-762-3366.