Saturday, September 11, 2010

A false choice for Greer

Originally posted at Nashville Metblogs on March 1st, 2006 by yours truly. Its appearance here 4 years later is part of a project to preserve my blogging contributions at other websites.

Note that the previous Mayor went ahead and unilaterally expanded the Fort Negley tourist attraction when the Sounds failed in their plan to build a Downtown ballpark.

The Nashville Americans of the Southern Association in 1886.

What to do with the plot of land on which old Greer Stadium sits once the Sounds move Downtown? Tear down the stadium and build an extension of Fort Negley as a Civil War tourist attraction or build to suit a women’s fast pitch softball team? Why not “yes” to both? Baseball and the Civil War seemed to be so intertwined that soldiers often stocked bats along with their firearms. One of my favorite Civil War-baseball anecdotes comes from Geoffrey Ward and Ken Burns:

A Union soldier named George Putnam recalled playing between the lines in Texas when “suddenly there came a scattering of fire of which the three outfielders caught the brunt; the center field was hit and captured, the left and right field managed to get back into our lines. The attack … was repelled without serious difficulty, but we had lost not only our center field, but … the only baseball in Alexandria, Texas.”

The historic connections justify both future uses.

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