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Bridgeport in Fairfield County, Connecticut — The American Northeast (New England)
 

James Henry O’Rourke

 
 
James Henry O’Rourke Marker image. Click for full size.
By Michael Herrick, December 24, 2015
1. James Henry O’Rourke Marker
Inscription.
James Henry O'Rourke
September 1, 1850 - January 8, 1919
‘Orator Jim' O'Rourke, son of Irish immigrants, was a professional baseball player, scholar, and civil rights activist. The Bridgeport native had the first base hit in National League history on April 22, 1876. He played for eight different major league teams during 23 seasons; While a player for the New York Giants, the team paid for Jim to attend Yale Law School, from which he received his law degree in 1887. Noted for his command of language, Jim used his eloquence to entertain teammates and confound opponents.

In 1895, Jim helped to organize the Connecticut State League. He owned, managed and played catcher for several local teams. and hired Harry Herbert, Bridgeport's first African-American resident to play professional baseball. In 1898, Jim built a minor league stadium, Newfield Park, on his family's farmland in the city's East End; the site is still in use as a city park. At age 54, Jim caught a complete game for the New York Giants. He played in his final professional game in New Haven at age 62. His brother and son also played major league baseball.

James H. O’Rourke was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1945. (south face)
“We have been given the best of support by the people of Bridgeport.
James Henry O’Rourke image. Click for full size.
By Michael Herrick, December 24, 2015
2. James Henry O’Rourke
They want a baseball team and I intend to give it to them.”
(east face)
Dedicated on this 27th day of August, 2010
by Mayor Bill Finch
Sculptor
Susan Clinard, Clinard Sculpture Studio
Principal Donor
Steelpointe Harbor and the
Christoph Family
Maior Donors
O'Keefe Controls Company
Conan Family
Special Thanks to The First Hit, Inc.
Bernard J. Crowley, Baseball Historian
Michael J. Bielawa, Baseball Historian Poet
Paul Conan Jr., great, great grandson of James
Statue foundation provided by G. Pic and Sons Construction
(north face)
“Baseball is for all creeds and nationalities.”

 
Erected 2010.
 
Location. 41° 10.336′ N, 73° 11.298′ W. Marker is in Bridgeport, Connecticut, in Fairfield County. Marker is at the intersection of Broad Street and South Frontage Road, on the right when traveling north on Broad Street. Touch for map. Located in front of Bridgeport Bluefish Stadium. Marker is in this post office area: Bridgeport CT 06604, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Abraham Lincoln’s Visit (approx. 0.3 miles away); Bridgeport Korean War Memorial (approx.
The Book at His Feet image. Click for full size.
By Michael Herrick, December 24, 2015
3. The Book at His Feet
“Baseball is for all creeds and nationalities.”
James O’Rourke   1910
0.3 miles away); Bryant Electric Company World War I Monument (approx. 0.3 miles away); Bridgeport (approx. 0.3 miles away); Bridgeport World War II Memorial (approx. 0.3 miles away); Bridgeport Veterans Memorial (approx. 0.3 miles away); Bryant Electric Company World War II Monument (approx. 0.3 miles away); Bridgeport Vietnam War Memorial (approx. 0.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Bridgeport.
 
Also see . . .
1. Jim O'Rourke at the Baseball Hall of Fame. (Submitted on December 26, 2015, by Michael Herrick of Southbury, Connecticut.)
2. James O’Rourke at the Bridgeport Library History Center. (Submitted on December 26, 2015, by Michael Herrick of Southbury, Connecticut.)
3. James Henry O’Rourke on Wikipedia. (Submitted on December 26, 2015, by Michael Herrick of Southbury, Connecticut.)
 
Categories. Sports
 
James Henry O’Rourke and Bridgeport Bluefish Stadium image. Click for full size.
By Michael Herrick, December 24, 2015
4. James Henry O’Rourke and Bridgeport Bluefish Stadium
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on December 26, 2015, by Michael Herrick of Southbury, Connecticut. This page has been viewed 256 times since then and 28 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on December 26, 2015, by Michael Herrick of Southbury, Connecticut.
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