Hailed by Sports Illustrated as the "Edward Gibbon of baseball history," Harold Seymour is the first professional historian to produce an authoritative, multivolume chronicle of America's national pastime. The first two volumes of this study--The Early Years and The Golden Age--won universal acclaim. The New York Times wrote that they "will grip every American who has invested part of his youth and dreams in the sport," while The Boston Globe called them "irresistible."
Now, in The People's Game, Seymour offers the first book devoted entirely to the history of the game outside of the professional leagues, revealing how, from its early beginnings up to World War II, baseball truly became the great American pastime. He explores the bond between baseball and boys through the decades, the game's place in institutions from colleges to prisons to the armed forces, the rise of women's baseball that coincided with nineteenth century feminism, and the struggles of black players and clubs from the later years of slavery up to the Second World War.
Whether discussing the birth of softball or the origins of the seventh inning stretch, Dr. Seymour enriches his extensive research with fascinating details and entertaining anecdotes as well as his own wealth of baseball experience. The People's Game brings to life the central role of baseball for generations of Americans.
"No one has done more to document the history of baseball than Harold Seymour....unique. Never before has so much information about baseball outside of the major and minor leagues been assembled between two covers, so much....Along the way he tells wonderful stories....the remarkable breadth and richness of detail in Baseball: The People's Game will make it an essential reference work for historians of leisure, recreation, and sport for many
years."--Warren Goldstein, The Journal of American History
"Must reading for all lovers of the game and should be absolutely required for those who presume to meddle with its well-being and future....Significant not only for the history it tells, which is rich, detailed and lavishly researched, but for the questions it raises about baseball as a game and as a United States institution."--New York Times Book Review
"For three decades Harold Seymour has been not merely the most respected of the game's historians but also the standard-setter against whose work all other have been weighed....Both does [baseball] justice and pays it tribute."--Washington Post
"A scholarly, but very accessible, in-depth treasure-trove of baseball information and lore."--Kirkus Reviews