Doubleday

Doubleday

[duhb-uhl-dey]
Doubleday, Abner, 1819-93, once credited as originator of baseball and Union general in the American Civil War, b. Saratoga co., N.Y., grad. West Point, 1842. The A. G. Mills commission (1905-8) investigated the origin of baseball and, based upon a single, unsubstantiated letter from an elderly man who later died in an insane asylum, declared that in 1839 Doubleday invented the game at Cooperstown, N.Y. In fact, Doubleday's obituary described him as a man who did not care for outdoor sports, and scholars since have effectively discredited the Cooperstown myth. Doubleday served in the Mexican War and in the Civil War. He saw action at Fort Sumter (where he fired the first shot in defense), Antietam, Fredericksburg, and Gettysburg.

Abner Doubleday.

(born June 26, 1819, Ballston Spa, N.Y., U.S.—died Jan. 26, 1893, Mendham, N.J.) U.S. Army officer, once thought to be the inventor of baseball. Doubleday served in the Mexican War and the Seminole Wars. As a major general in the American Civil War, he gave the first order to fire at Fort Sumter, and he later fought in other major battles. In 1907 a commission appointed by A.G. Spalding concluded that Doubleday formulated the essential rules of baseball in 1839 at Cooperstown, N.Y., leading to the choice of Cooperstown as the site of the Baseball Hall of Fame. It was later proved that Doubleday was not in Cooperstown in 1839. Seealso Alexander Cartwright.

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Abner Doubleday.

(born June 26, 1819, Ballston Spa, N.Y., U.S.—died Jan. 26, 1893, Mendham, N.J.) U.S. Army officer, once thought to be the inventor of baseball. Doubleday served in the Mexican War and the Seminole Wars. As a major general in the American Civil War, he gave the first order to fire at Fort Sumter, and he later fought in other major battles. In 1907 a commission appointed by A.G. Spalding concluded that Doubleday formulated the essential rules of baseball in 1839 at Cooperstown, N.Y., leading to the choice of Cooperstown as the site of the Baseball Hall of Fame. It was later proved that Doubleday was not in Cooperstown in 1839. Seealso Alexander Cartwright.

Learn more about Doubleday, Abner with a free trial on Britannica.com.

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