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Huntsville in Madison County, Alabama — The American South (East South Central)
 

Dallas (Optimist) Park / (Dallas) Optimist Park

 
 
Dallas (Optimist) Park / (Dallas) Optimist Park Marker image. Click for full size.
By Duane and Tracy Marsteller, August 2, 2020
1. Dallas (Optimist) Park / (Dallas) Optimist Park Marker
Inscription.  
Dallas (Optimist) Park
1928-1949

Built in 1928, Dallas Park served as the baseball field for the Dallas Mill teams coached by H.E. "Hub” Myhand, who came to Huntsville in 1927 as physical director for Dallas Manufacturing Co. Until the 1940's, he was Mr. Baseball in Huntsville. During these years, semi-pro baseball featuring local mill teams drew loyal crowds of up to 6,000 fans. In 1935, the Lincoln and Dallas Mill teams merged to form the Redcaps. The Huntsville Dr. Peppers (1937-1943), a women's semi-pro softball team coached by Cecil Fain, also played here.

(Dallas) Optimist Park
1949-

In 1949, the Optimist Club purchased Dallas Park from Dallas Mills, erected lights, and renamed it Optimist Park. The close of the cotton mills ended the mill-team era, though semi-pro baseball returned with Leroy McCollum's Huntsville Boosters (1950-53). The park, one of the few early ball parks open to all races, was used during the 1950's and 1960's for exhibition games by the Birmingham Black Barons and other Negro League teams. With the Park renovated and reopened (1994)
Dallas (Optimist) Park / (Dallas) Optimist Park Marker image. Click for full size.
By Duane and Tracy Marsteller, August 2, 2020
2. Dallas (Optimist) Park / (Dallas) Optimist Park Marker
by the City of Huntsville, baseball returned to Optimist Park, the self proclaimed “Friend of Youth."
 
Erected 1994 by Alabama Historical Association.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: African AmericansParks & Recreational AreasSportsWomen.
 
Location. 34° 45.042′ N, 86° 34.412′ W. Marker is in Huntsville, Alabama, in Madison County. Marker can be reached from Oakwood Avenue Northeast just east of England Street Northeast, on the right when traveling east. Marker is located near the playground and pavilion. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 703 Oakwood Avenue Northeast, Huntsville AL 35811, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Dallas Mills and Village / Rison School (approx. ¼ mile away); Oak Place (approx. 0.7 miles away); Lincoln School and Village (approx. 0.7 miles away); Lowry House (approx. 0.7 miles away); Five Points Historic District (approx. 0.8 miles away); Goldsmith-Schiffman Field (approx. 0.9 miles away); Site of Green Academy (approx. 1.1 miles away); Maple Hill Cemetery (approx. 1.1 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Huntsville.
 
Dallas (Optimist) Park / (Dallas) Optimist Park Marker image. Click for full size.
By Duane and Tracy Marsteller, August 2, 2020
3. Dallas (Optimist) Park / (Dallas) Optimist Park Marker
1930 Dallas Mill baseball team image. Click for full size.
Huntsville-Madison County Public Library, 1930
4. 1930 Dallas Mill baseball team
The twenty-third photograph is a picture of a baseball team with bats facing towards the camera. On the back, it says "1930 Dallas Team: Pictured are, left to right, top row: Charlie England, J. J. Chisam, Haskell "Red" Blount, Alfred "Cowboy" Fitch, Ed Herrin, Dick Prentice, (first name unavailable) Stewart, and "Hub" Myhand; bottom row, O. H. "Happy" Coonce, Houston Payne, Gene Williams, Thearon "Fatty" Fisher, Jim Tom Gentry, Perry Chism and Elgie Webb.".
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on August 5, 2020. It was originally submitted on August 5, 2020, by Duane Marsteller of Murfreesboro, Tennessee. This page has been viewed 68 times since then and 3 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on August 5, 2020, by Duane Marsteller of Murfreesboro, Tennessee. • Devry Becker Jones was the editor who published this page.
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Jan. 17, 2021