Recently unearthed newspaper articles about John Donaldson and
the Tennessee Rats Baseball Team

Back to John Donaldson's Homepage
John Donaldson The article reads:
Brown's Tennessee Rats Will Play Firemen and "All Stars" and Give a Minstrel Show.

  Arrangements were made yesterday for two games of baseball in Perry next week, and the indications are that both will be well patronized.
  Brown's "Tennessee Rats" an aggregation of colored players who have been winning from nearly every team they have played this year, will play the fire department team on Friday, June 2nd and the "All Stars" on Saturday, June 3rd.
  In the evening of both days they will give a minstrel show at the Grand, and from all reports they are equally as good in the theatrical line as they are on the ball field. They carry a band and make a street parade each day.
  The colored men have within the past week won from Jefferson, Redfield, Adel, and Panora, and a number of Perry people who saw them play yesterday at Grand Junction, say they are very fast.
Another article appeared in the daily paper, in more detail, about five days later.
Team that Will Play Here Friday and Saturday Won Again Yesterday at Coon Rapids

  Brown's "Tennessee Rats," the colored baseball team which will be seen in Perry Friday and Saturday, continue to win all the games in sight, and are proving themselves one of the best colored organizations in the country.
  Yesterday they won from Coon Rapids 5 to 0, and the day before took the game by the score of 4 to 1. Today and tomorrow they play at Bayard.
Friday they play the Fire Department team here, and Saturday they will be opposed by Dave Wasson's All Stars. The line-up of the Firemen will be:

    Millete or McGoeye-Pitcher
    Hagar-First Base
    Snyder-Second Base
    Battee-Third Base
    Sandquist-Left Field
    Reynolds-Center Field
    Flanagan-Right Field
  A paper at Omro, Wis., says of the minstrel show which will appear at the Grand Friday: "Brown's Tennessee Minstrels who have been appearing before large audiences at the Opera House on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday evening, closed their engagements here, last evening and left this morning for New London. The company, sixteen in number, possess a fine band, and entertained the public by discoursing some of their fine selections, during each afternoon of their stay. Their entertainments which they gave were all that they represented. The singing and dancing comedian, Fred Stone, was certainly a master of his art, and made a big hit with his audience. The ladies trio, which was given Monday evening was very good, their costumes were attractive and unique. The negro, melodies which they rendered, such as "Old Black Joe." "Sunny Tennessee," brought out the harmony in their voices and was much appreciated by the audience. They were repeatedly encored. The audience was also entertained by Norman Little the expert Hoop Roller and Juggler, and gave some very fine attractions and also his trick dog Diana performed some very wonderful feats. The show was one of the best minstrels that has visited here in some time, and are wolcome to Omro when in this vicinity.
John Donaldson
John Donaldson One of the local weekly papers made a small mention of the upcoming baseball game:
Two Ball Games
  Brown's "Tennessee Rats" will play two games in Perry this week, Friday afternoon they will meet a team from the Firemen and Saturday afternoon Dave Wasson's All Star performers will play the game. The colored team are said to be clever and have been playing shut out games galore.
This final game-day message was in the local daily paper:
"All Stars" and Brown's Tennessee Rats Will Play at Driving Park

  This afternoon the Fire Department baseball team and Brown's Tennessee Rats, an organization of colored players who have made an enviable reputation in central Iowa the past few weeks, are playing at the Driving Park. Tomorrow afternoon the visitors will play a team composed of the best local talent of the city, known as the "All Stars." The colored men will give a minstrel performance at the Grand both tonight and tomorrow night.
John Donaldson
Back to the John Donaldson Homepage