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Lecture 5

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HIST 205
David Schweitzer

Lecture 5 – Nineteenth-Century Sport Spectacles Victorians or new middle class  Space and time  Transportation o Steam boats o Railroads  1860, Excelsior’s baseball team (Brooklyn)  1876, National League (professional baseball)  Until 1950, baseball teams traveled by train until air flight became affordable. Communication Improvements  Mass produced watches (people will be able to know when the sports games are to watch art a certain time)  Telegraph (big because results can be known quickly – important for the paper as they can make the papers quickly for the people to read the next morning with results of the games)  Print media (largely dedicated to the educated elite)  Daily newspaper (political news) o Weekly specialized news sheet  William Trotter Porter’s Spirit of the Times (1831) – Had to subscribe yearly.  New York Clipper (1845) and The Sporting News (1886) focused on baseball.  National Police Gazette (1845) covered all forms of entertainment o Yellow journalism  The Boston Transcript, the Baltimore Sun and the New York Herald (reported gossip, scandals, made up stories) Middle Class Victorian culture  Successful self-made men (farmers, business men etc.)  Money bought respectability  Evangelical Protestantism o Methodist and Baptist denominations o Special responsibility to women  Attitudes towards sport o Rational recreation o Private sphere of family Muscular Christianity (muscular morality)  Thomas Wentworth Higginson (studied the Greeks) – Had a balanced life. Being ethical, moral and physical.  This will lead to personal success for little kids as it will make then tougher and successful when they are older (not committed to sport) o Moral benefits guided and controlled spirit of amateurism. Victorian counterculture
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