GREATER HARTFORD BASEBALL Timeline
FROM today to the year 1860.
1860 - The Independent Base Ball Club
The first organized baseball team in Hartford of public record.
1865 - The Charter Oak Base Ball Club
One of Hartford's first organized baseball teams, the Charter Oaks were the best team in the Greater Hartford area.
1866 - "The Bat and Ball" Published in Hartford
The popular baseball editorial published in 1866 and 1867 gained national recognition.
1866 - More than 200 teams in Connecticut
Printed in Hartford, "The Bat and Ball" was the first newspaper primarily devoted to baseball and reported a vast number of baseball clubs forming throughout the Greater Hartford area at that time.
1867 - The Bat and Ball Published in Hartford for the Second Season
The Bat and Ball was devoted exclusively to ''base ball'' happenings throughout the country (apart from a column on cricket) during the post-Civil War era when the sport, still in its infancy, was booming.
1870 - Base Ball Convention Held in Hartford
Player-manger for the Charter Oaks, Gershom B. Hubbell hosted the statewide event as President of the Connecticut Base Ball Association.
1874 - Hartford Base Ball Club Formed
Led by Gershom B. Hubbell and Morgan G. Bulkeley, the first professional sports franchise is established in Hartford. The team would be later known as the "Hartford Dark Blues".
1874 - First Professional Game in Hartford
New York Mutuals at Hartford Dark Blues on May 2nd at the Hartford Base Ball Grounds. Hartford won by a score of 10 to 7.
1875 - Hartford Dark Blues
Led by their player-manager, Bob Ferguson from Brooklyn (sitting, center) the team had their best season, finishing second place in the National Association trailing only the Boston Red Stockings.
1876 - Hartford Dark Blues
Connecticut's first and last Major League club moves to Brooklyn. The inventor of the curveball, Candy Cummings is pictured (back row, right).
1877 - Hartford Base Ball Club Moves to Brooklyn
Management believed they could turn a larger profit in Brooklyn and a majority of players on the Hartford team were natives of Brooklyn, including their third baseman player-manager, Bob Ferguson.
1878 - Yale University Comes to Hartford to Challenge Harvard University for the Collegiate Championship
Yale lost to Harvard by a score of 16 to 3. Walter Camp (back, tallest) of football fame, was Yale’s team captain.
1884 - Connie Mack Begins his Professional Career in Connecticut
Before he became a Hall of Fame manager, Mack was a catcher in the newly formed Connecticut State League for the Meriden club and then the Hartford club in 1885 and 1886.
1899 - Hartford Indians Sign Louis Sockalexis
Sockalexis was the first Native American to play professional baseball in Hartford. He was a dynamic outfielder but he was said to have battled alcoholism leading to a short-lived professional career.
1904 - Electric Vehicle Company's Ball Team
Electric Vehicle Company competed versus other local manufacturers in the Factory League (later called the Industrial League), one of Hartford's earliest organized amateur baseball leagues.
1906 - The Hartford Senators Baseball Team Champions of the Eastern League
James H. Clarkin, (middle, back) was the owner of the Senators from 1904 to 1916.
1915 - Hartford Senators
An independent team in the Colonial League led by their player-manager, Frank Delahanty (front, center).
1916 - Poli Baseball Club
Poli's Theatre sponsored this independent franchise with players from Hartford and East Hartford.
1919 - Babe Ruth Homers in Bristol
At Muzzy Field, Ruth blasted a two run homer over the right field fence leading the Red Sox over the Bristol based New Departure club by a score of 6 to 2 on Saturday, September 21.
1920 - Babe Ruth Plays Game for the Poli's
"The Bambino" had four hits that day at Muzzy Field beating the New Departure club on Saturday, October 2nd.
1929 - The Greater Hartford Twilight Baseball League is Established
First named the "City Independent Twilight League" teams would play all games at Colt Park in Hartford.
1930 - Savitt Gems Begin Run of Success the Hartford Twilight League Title
Hartford Jewelry Store owner Bill Savitt and his brother Max Savitt, sponsored and managed the team, who were a main attraction for the city and would later become a semi-pro club.
1937 - Morgan G. Bulkeley elected to Baseball Hall of Fame
Inducted 15 years after his death, Bulkeley was the first president of the National League, president of Aetna Insurance Company for 43 years, Governor and Senator of Connecticut, and a Civil War veteran.
1945 - Savitt Gems Host Babe Ruth
The "Bambino" took the final at bat of playing career in
Hartford, Connecticut at Bulkeley Stadium.
1965 - Hartford Twilight League Hosts first Old-Timers Day
The alumni played the game at Dillon Stadium in Hartford.
1970 - Moriarty Brothers Dominates Greater Hartford Twilight League
Led by slugging third basemen, Gene Johnson, and sponsor Matt Moriarty, the team was largely comprised of future and former professional players winning several twilight championships over a 25 year span.
1973 to 1982 - Bristol Red Sox Play at Muzzy Field
The double-A team was a Boston Red Sox affiliate in the Eastern League (photo is of the 1978 Bristol Red Sox - Wade Boggs back row, center).
1983 to 2015 - New Britain Rock Cats
The Rock Cats were the Double-A affiliate of the Minnesota Twins as part of the Eastern League.
1997 - David "Big Papi" Ortiz Plays for the New Britain Rock Cats
In his first Double-A season, Ortiz hit for a .322 average with 14 home runs and 56 RBI in New Britain and was soon promoted to the Minnesota Twins.
2017 - Hartford Yard Goats Come Home to Dunkin' Donuts Park
As the Double-A affiliate of the Colorado Rockies in the Eastern League, the Yard Goats become the first professional baseball club to call Hartford home since 1952.