This is a little of topic of cards but I located a great website for all the Sporting News archives at www.paperofrecord.com. Perhaps most of you are already aware of this site, but for those who don't know, this is fun stuff.
I am heading to St. Louis next week to visit relatives and part of my reason for going was to go visit The Sporting News Research Center. The website is still up and running and it states that their research center has lots of archives, pictures, etc. I've been concentrating on pre-1900 baseball research and have been gathering a few cards and doing a lot of reading. I couldn't wait to visit the research center and wondered if one full day would be enough. I called this morning to make my required reservation at the research center only to find out that the center closed last May. I was very disappointed at first, but then the guy tells me that all of the Sporting News copies are on line at www.paperofrecord.com. It's free to sign up and the site includes newspaper archives from all over the world. Be careful, the site boasts 21 million images so you can spend a lot of time researching. The site includes newspapers from all over the world. The Sporting News happens to be located under Missouri newspapers.
It's pretty cool being able to read articles about the players we collect.
Also wondering if anybody ever went to the research center while it was open?
No, I wasn't aware of these resources, and in the first few minutes of browsing I was able to find four new articles mentioning one of my cousins - tremendous find for me - thank you very much for sharing this....and I must say, really cool resource for getting a feel for the baseball news of the day (whatever day you choose!)...neat to see the different writing style of yesteryear...
This could be a wonderful research vehicle, but it would take an enormous amount of time and patience to use it.
The condition of the papers in the scans are pretty awful, in some cases rendering the search facility useless. For instance, I used the tool to find occurrences of Gus Weyhing's name. The system provided just five hits - all from 1886 before he even made the major leagues. The guy won 264 games between 1887 and 1901 - you'd think there would have been at least one hit in that time span.
Not that it was a total loss. I did find out he played for Charleston in the Southern League before making the pros. It also reported that he was signed by the Philadelphia Quakers and not the team he played for, the Philadelphia Athletics. Not sure if that's true or a misprint.
you may have made the same mistake I did when I first used it...I came up with a similar problem when researching my cousins yesterday, BUT note that the search engine only searches for 5 years at a time, and the default start date is 1886.
Try setting the search years for a time when you know he was playing and try again...should be much different results!
Illegible somewhat, but like a Doctor's chicken scratch, a little experience and you can breeze through most text.
Many of the pages show folding, tape, tears, stains etc. and it's tough to decipher some worn pages. Also most of the nations big Daily's aren't in the database yet. It seems like a work in progress. I've printed the SN front page for each supplement I have to keep with M101-2s as I don't expect to ever find originals -in this lifetime.
Reading through these is addicting and I suspect it's gonna be another day of no house cleaning. Dave's 'Divorce' thread is quite fitting this week.
Unfortunately, I don't think the poor results I got had anything to do with how I structured the query.
The system said that the period returned was 1886 - 1891. Weyhing's pro career started in 1887, so there should have been some hits in 1887 - 1891. I changed up the second (and subsequent times) by increasing the start year by one and still got zero hits.
I suspect there are lots more references to your cousin among the pages, but you'll probably never find them using the search tool.
I was hoping that would help...was there a popular alternative spelling, or a nickname that might yield results? Does seem odd that it would yield so little for a person with a long career...
Actually, I was on the site for more than an hour last night until I could no longer see straight, because the search tool returned literally hundreds of references to my cousins! Including an article on how one of them bought his mother a house with his first Pirates contract, and it actually has a picture of the house, the car he bought, and a family photo! jackpot! The first references to him involved his minor league ascension to the Reds, which I have never been able to piece together before...
Pasted below is a box score from a game between The Philadelphia Quakers and the Philadelphia Athletics from The Sporting News of Saturday, April 16, 1887.
As you can see, Gus Wehing's name is in the box score. I am guessing that the poor quality of the image is preventing the search tool from finding it. Even when I am on the page itself, a search does not turn up the reference. I am also guessing that the success with your searches is related to better conditioned images from the period during which your cousins played.
Not that this was totally unrewarding. Since Weying's name is associated with the Philadelphia National League team, it would seem to prove that the reference above was not a fluke and that he did, indeed, play for the Quakers, a fact unreported in any of his historical data of which I am aware!
I think it was somewhat common back then for the teams to go by multiple names including just the city they were from. Obviously, that would be an issue in big cities like Philadelphia, which might have more than one team.
The Quakers apparently officially changed their name to the Phillies in 1890.
Just rec'd this reply. Could be good news for those with search issues.
>Steve--Thanks for the kind words. I'll let you in on a secret, we have been acquired by ______ and they are intending to release a similar product in 6 months or so using better technology. One of the projects slated is to re-scan all of the Sporting News from all sources. I'll send along your note to the powers that be----Best---Bob Huggins
Founder & CEO