Wednesday, September 17, 2014

A Baseball Mystery in Five Post Cards - Part Three

The third in a series of post cards that seem to be telling a story.  Back track for the earlier post(s).

Another card in the genre of baseball and romance.  This features the usual comedic pairing of an elegant, serene Gibson Girl alongside a coarse featured bumpkin of a ball player.

Like our last entry this is from "Cy" to Benjamin Christianson of Viroqua.  This is dated a couple of weeks after the prior card, June 12th of 1911.  The text on this is again both dense and confusing.  In fact it was reading this one that made us think we were on to something really unusual, perhaps the correspondence of a minor league manager.  OK, here goes:

"Hello Pal, how is everything over on your side of the world?  On my first managerial trip my youngsters lost to Ontario 8 to 7 in 14 innings.  Same game away from home on a rainy day. Come over next Sun + watch us skin them here.  Good Luck.   Cy Young Roberts

After puzzling quite a bit about how a baseball team from Wisconsin could be playing a team from Ontario, and perhaps from Montana in our first entry, I had a flash of inspiration.  Sure enough, there is a small community called Ontario Wisconsin not far from where this card was posted, LaFarge Wisconsin.

So we now have tumbled quite a ways down the baseball hierarchy, from a wide traveling minor league or barnstorming team all the way down to town ball.  "Cy" in reflecting on his recent promotion to manager seems a bit surprised.  Perhaps he was an unexpected choice as player-manager?

I suppose Cy has the last name of Roberts.  He is referring to Ben Christianson as "Pal" so my notion that they were brothers seems unlikely.  As they share an interest in baseball and seem to both be young fellows I am thinking former team mates.  Oh, and there actually was a major league player who went by the moniker of Cy Roberts.  In the summer of 1911 he was still in diapers.

We shall, alas,  hear no more from Cy, but Ben Christianson's role in the story continues tomorrow.

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