In 1913, The New York Female Giants Baseball Team In Harlem

womens-basbeball-in-harlemIn 1913, a New York Female Giants baseball game on Lenox Oval shows McAvoy’s Saloon in the background, the northwest corner of 145th Street and Lenox Avenue. womens-baseball-in-harlem

These early women’s teams — called ‘Bloomer Girls’ for the bottom half of their uniforms. The All-American Girls Professional Baseball League, featured in the movie A League Of Their Own, would not be formed until the 1940s. McAvoy’s Saloon years later to became the Hotel Olga (that’s the building standing to the right of the frame above the player standing in the outfied).

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The Female Giants don’t appear to be all women players either although there are no disguises at least. The men featured in these pictures played with the New York Giants.

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The team was broke up into two teams — the ‘Red Stockings’ and the ‘Blue Stockings’– and played a notable exhibition game for almost 1,500 people on Sunday, May 25, 1913 at the Lenox Oval, a sports field at Lenox Avenue and 145th Street.

It seems their typical game schedule went unnoticed by the press which is probably a good thing. That May 25th game was written about by the New York Tribune in the following fashion:

The batter hitched up her skirt.  The pitcher nervously adjusted a side comb. Girls will be boys, and the Reds and the Blues of the New York Female Giants were playing an exhibition game at Lenox Oval, 145th Street and Lenox Avenue. – Source

The photographs are from the George Grantham Bain Collection, 1913 and via source.

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  • This photo citation was first published by Eric K. Washington on July 30, 2013, in his Examiner.com article called, “Hotel Olga, Race retreat of the Harlem Renaissance.” To read the full article and see more related images in context, kindly go follow this link: http://www.examiner.com/article/hotel-olga-race-resort-of-the-harlem-renaissance

    • admin

      Eric,

      Thank you, we just made the addition.

      Would love to do a podcast with you about the “Hotel Olga, Race retreat of the Harlem Renaissance.”

      Daniel
      Harlem World Magazine