York City Police Blue Coats played baseball at Penn Park’s stadium to raise funds for uniforms
John Stine, centerfielder and cleanup hitter for York, Pa.’s, artifact-rich Police Heritage Museum (seen here), is interested in how police history intersects with local pro baseball history. This York Daily Record/Sunday News file photograph shows Stine at the West Market Street museum with a Victorian-era prison sword and a hat from a Royal Canadian mounted police dress uniform from the 1870s. He sits inside a late-1800s jail cell. Its bunks come from old York County Prison building on Chestnut Street. Also of interest: From Penn Park field to Sovereign Bank Stadium, York-area baseball fans have heard ‘Play ball’ and 5,000 Penn Park fans witnessed first York night baseball and Remembering York/Adams major leaguers.
John Stine commented about a recent York Town Square post that located the first York-area baseball stadium at the site of Zion United Church of Christ, across the street from Penn Park.
That location was not news to John Stine, a student of York County history. But he commented that he had never seen a photograph of the ball field.
He added some rich links between law enforcement and baseball. Here is an edited excerpt from comment on the post:
For many years the York City Police baseball team “The Blue Coats” played the Harrisburg City Police, as a fundraiser to purchase uniforms for the officers. In the era of the ball field, officers had to purchase their own uniforms and equipment. Just as a little note to history; the York City Police had a Baseball police officer, who was assigned to keep the peace at games; in addition, Opera police were assigned to the opera houses for the protection patrons, and to insure the Opera houses followed ordinances regulating them.
Those comments make you want to know more, in the mode of the interesting artifacts ready for public view at the Police Heritage Museum.
Also of interest:
Old York County town jails: ‘They’re kind of hidden history’.