By James A. Crothers II
When I started this project, I never expected it to be as involved, complicated, frustrating and fun as it has been. There are two reasons I wanted to do this history: I played in those first two years, and my family was directly involved in its founding. Wilson Ewing is my first cousin. I knew he was the first Little League President and I always thought that was historically significant for the Rising Sun community. But I didn’t begin talking to him about the 1954 events until almost too late. His memory is fading, but he still provided enough facts and stories to intrigue me and inspire me to do some more research. Also, in 1954, my father, Charles Crothers, was mayor of Rising Sun, and this project helped me fill in some blank spots in my own family history. As it turned out, only two of the Little League founders are still alive, Ewing and Robert F. Marlin, Jr. Although most of the early Board and Officers were only twenty-five or thirty years old, Marlin (whom everyone always called “Pete”) was even younger, at twenty-three. He has been an invaluable asset to me for this history. It is amazing and somewhat disheartening to find so much local history lost so quickly. And, believe me, I’ve found that personal recollections, as colorful and fun as they may be, are generally unreliable. It is hard to believe, but there are just not any written records or meeting minutes left for many of our community organizations. (Whatever happened to all those scorebooks we kept so carefully?) So, trying to fill in some of that lost history became the final inspiration for this history project. Perhaps this paper will tweak some more memories and perhaps a fuller history can be written. Until then, at least we have this basic information on record. I had fun interviewing a lot of people and talking old-time baseball. Thanks to all those who agreed to help me and, especially, to the family members, noted in the footnotes, who have helped fill in missing information
Welcome to the Historical Society of Cecil County blog focusing on the early years of the Rising Sun Community Little League. The idea for this web 2.0 product came about after James Crothers, an original member of the Rising Sun team, pulled together a fascinating history about the early years, 1954 and 1955. Once he finished his extensive and thorough research, he gave the Society the opportunity to publish this excellent local history. We were so pleased with the material that we dedicated two issues of the Inkwell, our print membership publication, to the informative cluster of articles and essays. The material is exactly what local historical societies should be doing these days, capturing the memories and recollections of times that are beginning to grow distant in memory.
But as we looked at the product we noticed a lot more material, such as photographs, old newspaper stories, and brief biographical pieces, weren’t going to be able to make it into print so we added a blog to the series. This will allow us to make all the material available to the public, add additional content as more information comes along, and have comments, as well as interactive discussions with anyone surfing our way. Anyone clicking on the weblog is welcome to share additional memories, ask questions or post feedback on the virtual history home for the early years of the Rising Sun Community Little League. When we asked the author if he would be willing to moderate this site in the blogosphere for us, he said sure he would give it a try. This location was thus created.
Please feel free to add your comments, posts, memories and feedback to the site and watch the blog for additional pieces, brief notes, and comments on the subject. Be sure to check out the other parts of our virtual library on the World Wide Web, while you are at. We thank James Crothers for allowing us to publishing this excellent series and for also agreeing to serve as our blogmaster on this weblog.