Williams, Michigan: Kalamazoo County Ghost Town
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Baseball in Williams in the early 1900's

According to Florence Snow's book, "Alamo Township: Past and Present", baseball was played in Williams at the "Shields ballpark" where "...a stand was built and good crowds attended".

  Williams Ball Team 1910 postcard

This postcard was addressed to my grandmother and labeled with "Ball Team Williams 1910" on the back.

Florence mentions a memorable 1908-1909 team (perhaps the nearby Alamo team) that played at Williams.

The photo below is of Frank Paul Williams, a Michigan Central RR engineer, who played ball on the Williams ballteam.  Notice the "W" on his jersey.  Thanks to Patrick Shields of Kalamazoo for this photo of his grandfather.

Frank P. Williams standing photo

 

Patrick Williams mentioned that he remembered his grandfather telling him that the Williams team once played the Detroit Tigers, but I have yet to back that up with any evidence.  Perhaps a thorough search through old Kalamazoo Gazettes will prove or disprove this story.  If this is true, Ty Cobb may have played against the Williams team!

The following photo was found in my grandmother's collection with no label on the back.  It appears that these ballplayers have the same "W" on their jersey as Frank Williams in the previous photo, so I'm assuming this is another photo of a Williams ballteam.  Did you notice the horse in the background?

undated Williams team postcard photo

If you have anything you'd like to see added to this webpage, please contact me (Tom) at: williamsmichigan @ earthlink.net.  Questions and comments are also welcome!

This website was last updated on May 2, 2002.