“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Williamsport in Lycoming County, Pennsylvania — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)

Downtown Williamsport

Birthplace of the Little League World Series

Downtown Williamsport Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Cosmos Mariner, June 7, 2021
1. Downtown Williamsport Marker
Carl Stotz (1910-1972)
a lifelong Williamsport resident, was the founder of Little League Baseball. As he later told it, Stotz, a lumberyard clerk, was playing a backyard game of catch with his nephews when he came up with the idea. "How would you like to play on a regular team with uniforms, your own cap, a new ball for every game and bats your size?" he asked them. The next year, 1939, he recruited local businesses to sponsor the first three teams: Jumbo Pretzel, Lundy Lumber, and Lycoming Dairy (shown here). The first Little League World Series, in 1947, included teams from Pennsylvania and New Jersey only, but the League quickly expanded.

Stotz's dream of giving children a game where they could develop sportsmanship, fair play, and teamwork has flourished. Today's Little League includes 2.6 million players worldwide, with 200,000 teams in all 50 U.S. states and more than 80 countries.

Daniel Hughes (1804-1880)
was a conductor, agent and station master in the Underground Railroad in the Williamsport area. He was probably of mixed ancestry, African American and Mohawk Indian. Hughes married a local
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free woman, Ann Rotch, who was called a mulatto in the records. As owner of a Pennsylvania Canal barge, he traveled the Susquehanna from Williamsport to Maryland and was able to transport runaway slaves in the hold on his return trip upriver. He provided shelter to runaways on his property just outside the city before they fled further north and to eventual freedom in Canada.

Peter Herdic (1824-1888)
was a lumber baron, entrepreneur, inventor, politician, philanthropist, and developer in Williamsport. He was one of the wealthiest men in Pennsylvania and led the development of West Fourth Street, known as "Millionaires' Row." Herdic served as the city's mayor, donated large amounts of land and money to several of the city's churches and its original synagogue, and invented the Herdic cab, a horse-drawn carriage that was a precursor to the taxi. According to one newspaper obituary, "Peter Herdic was really the father of Williamsport. He was a progressive citizen; whatever may be said by his enemies, it cannot be denied that had it not been for Peter Herdic, Williamsport might be nothing more than a village of a few thousand inhabitants."

Madame Montour (1667-1753?)
was an influential interpreter and go-between who moved to Pennsylvania in 1727. Her village stood at the mouth of Loyalsock Creek, just east of Williamsport. Always known as "Madame
Marker detail: Carl Stotz (1910-1972) image. Click for full size.
2. Marker detail: Carl Stotz (1910-1972)
Montour" in Pennsylvania, she was probably born in New France (Canada) as Élizabeth Couc; her father was a French fur trader and her mother, an Algonquin Indian. She lived her entire life in fur trading communities near Detroit, in New York, and in Pennsylvania. No portrait exists from her lifetime, but this painting offers some idea of her appearance later in life.

[photo captions]
• Old City Hall (1875)
• The Church of the Covenant, later St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, and now Christ Community Worship Center
• Trinity Church (1876)
• Park Hotel
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Abolition & Underground RRArts, Letters, MusicSettlements & SettlersSports.
Location. 41° 14.392′ N, 77° 0.016′ W. Marker is in Williamsport, Pennsylvania, in Lycoming County. Marker is on Market Street just south of West Church Street, on the right when traveling south. Marker is located along the sidewalk near the southeast corner of the Church Street Transportation Center parking garage. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Williamsport PA 17701, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. St. Mark's Lutheran Church (within shouting distance of this marker); Market Square (about 500 feet away, measured in a direct line); Little League • Big Legacy
Marker detail: 5th Little League World Series Championship Game, original Little League Field, 1951 image. Click for full size.
3. Marker detail: 5th Little League World Series Championship Game, original Little League Field, 1951
(about 600 feet away); Lycoming County (about 600 feet away); Lincoln's Gettysburg Address (about 700 feet away); Transportation Tribute (about 700 feet away); Symbols Of Our Heritage (about 800 feet away); Architectural Artifacts (about 800 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Williamsport.
Marker detail: Daniel Hughes<br>(1804-1880) image. Click for full size.
4. Marker detail: Daniel Hughes
Marker detail: Peter Herdic (1824-1888) image. Click for full size.
5. Marker detail: Peter Herdic (1824-1888)
Marker detail: Madame Montour<br>(1667-1753?) image. Click for full size.
Original Painting by John Buxton
6. Marker detail: Madame Montour
Marker detail: Downtown Williamsport Mural image. Click for full size.
7. Marker detail: Downtown Williamsport Mural
The Artists: Michael Pilato, a Williamsport-based artist and a native of State College, Pennsylvania. He designs his mixed-media murals to fit specific sites in communities. He is Executive Director of Pilato Murals and of the Public Art Academy; he also founded the Adaptive Arts and Apprenticeship programs. Russian-born artist Yuriy Karabash collaborated with Pilato on this mural and others in Williamsport and State College. Pilato Murals aims "to inspire people to become positive role models in their community, while enhancing community spirit and development, and to educate through the power of mural arts."

The Mural: The Susquehanna River's West Branch has been at the center of Williamsport's history. Historic structures, churches, two successive city halls, and a historic house museum rise above the river, anchored by images of three founding figures from the city's past. Madame Montour, Daniel Hughes, and Peter Herdic symbolize the diversity that is Williamsport's heritage.

The artists painted the original artwork in acrylic on canvass, and Bunting Graphics of Verona, Pennsylvania, sand-blasted the images onto 40-foot-square perforated aluminum panels.

Downtown Williamsport Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Cosmos Mariner, June 7, 2021
8. Downtown Williamsport Marker
(looking east • Market Street in background)
Birthplace of Little League Mural image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Cosmos Mariner, June 7, 2021
9. Birthplace of Little League Mural
(located a few steps west of marker on south side of Transportation Center parking garage)
The Artist: Lena Yeagle is a lifelong resident of Lycoming County. She grew up in Barbours and now lives in Williamsport. A musician and skater as well as a visual artist, Yeagle has performed on vocals, cello, and violin with local bands Black Marble and Ten Cent Days and plays as "Fay-tal Attacktion" with the Susquehanna Valley Derby Vixens.

The Mural: With the original Little League Field in the background, a victorious Little League team celebrates. The team members are a composite of real players, because, as Yeagle said, "I wanted to create an image that embodied Little League and the fact that the whole world is part of it." She was influenced by early 20th-century illustrator Norman Rockwell as well as historic sepia photographs.

Credits. This page was last revised on December 6, 2021. It was originally submitted on December 6, 2021, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 153 times since then and 41 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9. submitted on December 6, 2021, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.

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Nov. 29, 2023