A Brief History

When base ball was originally played, the club was made up of the local sheriff and his relatives. They played against other sheriffs and their families. Base ball gradually evolved into what it is today.

Members of the Knickerbocker Base Ball Club wrote down the first rules of base ball in 1845. The rules included regulations governing sportsmanship as well as rules for conducting the matches.

As the popularity of base ball grew, competition became more important. Small town teams traveled for weekend matches to other towns, rivalries developed, and soon good players were sometimes secretly paid to play. Alas! The first openly professional base ball team was the Cincinnati Red Stockings of 1869.

Like so many other American traditions, base ball was ever changing. Over time and in different parts of the country, shocking behavior like overhand pitching, bunting, calling balls and strikes, sliding, and wearing gloves was slowly accepted.

The Douglas Dutchers were fashioned after a local club, the Douglas Athletic League, which first played in 1905. In 1996, the Vintage base Ball Association was formed to preserve the historical presentation of America’s favorite pastime. The Douglas Dutchers Club has been a member since its inception in 2003.

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