The Ohio Village Muffins are a group of enthusiastic lovers of the game who carry on the tradition of the sport as it was played in mid-nineteenth-century America. The first thing we tell people new to “vintage” base ball is that, historically, “base ball” was two words. This is an important because we like to do everything as the base ball players of 1860 did it: We play by their rules, dress in their uniforms, and exemplify their gentlemanly behavior.
Games are played against other vintage teams from Ohio and across the country. Each season the Muffins play over 40 matches and travel all over Ohio and out-of-state. Most recently, the Muffins traveled to Douglass, Michigan for a vintage base ball festival. The home field for the Muffins is in the Ohio Village, and many games are held in Muffin Meadow each summer. Everyone is welcome to come and cheer on all the participants in this family-friendly event. During, after and before the games, various members of the team are available to answer questions about the differences between the game of the 1860s and the game of today.
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The Lady Diamonds
In addition to the men’s team, the Ohio Village also hosts a women’s team, the Lady Diamonds. As women of the period pursued higher education, they participated in physical education outdoors and played base ball in secluded areas of a campus, as participation in such a strenuous sport as base ball was considered unlike. But the sport caught on, and by 1866 ladies' teams were forming in colleges. Early women's teams played in exercise outfits or work dresses. Later on, women's teams would tour and sometimes join carnival shows.
Join the Muffins or Diamonds
If you would like to play base ball with the Muffins or Diamonds, we would love to hear from you. Before each new playing year begins, the Muffins and Diamonds accept new members. In addition to ballists (players), we are very interested in recruiting volunteers as sideline interpreters, scorekeepers, and umpires—no prior experience necessary.
New members are asked to participate in the winter seminars at the Ohio History Connection. The winter seminars seek to familiarize new and returning members with types of interpretation, base ball of the 1860's, the time period of the 1860's, vintage base ball as it is being played today and the Ohio History Connection, the Ohio History Center and Ohio Village.
For information on the Ohio Village Muffins/Diamonds Program or the training seminars contact Susan Brouillette at the Ohio History Center in Columbus at 614.297.2616 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
2016 Ohio Village Muffins Schedule
Base Ball and Ohio Village Muffins History
Base Ball Rules of 1860
The Phoenix Bat Company
Tracy Martin's Baseball Museum