Other Early Leagues

Here is a list of other early pro / semi-pro / amateur baseball leagues that operated (or planned to have operated) in the Maritimes.  I will include a list of teams in each league and list any Major Leaguers that played in them.

1891 Inter-Colonial League

Sporting Life

1890 article in the Sporting Life about the league

Fredericton
Halifax
Moncton
Saint John
Truro
Windsor

Due to some overlap with the Nova Scotia League (Halifax, Truro & Windsor), it’s quite possible that they are the same league.  I am guessing the three New Brunswick teams joined the Nova Scotia League after the collapse of the New Brunswick League after the 1890 season.  This league didn’t play a game.

1891 Nova Scotia League

Digby
Halifax
New Glasgow
Truro
Windsor
Yarmouth

See above for the theory linking the Inter-colonial League with the Nova Scotia League.  Not sure why Digby, New Glasgow & Yarmouth are in this league and not the other, maybe they withdrew or joined the league after the NB teams withdrew?  The league folded before playing one game.

1909 Inter-Provincial League

Amherst
Fredericton
Hull
Moncton
Ottawa
Saint John

This league also didn’t get off the ground.

1911 Halifax City Pro League

Halifax Socials
Halifax Standards

This two team league featured a 19 game series where the Socials and Standards played against each other.  The clubs regularly played exhibitions against touring teams as well.  The Socials (10 wins) were the league champions.  Halifax also went 12 for 17 in games against other professional clubs from the Maritimes/New England.  Lee McElwee (.409) would win the league’s batting title.  He later played for the Philadelphia Athletics in 1916 (he batted .265).

1911 Pictou County League

New Glasgow
Stellarton
Westville

The Pictou County League considered itself to be semi-professional.  The governing body declared the league professional as anyone who played with professionals was no longer considered amateur.

1912 Nova Scotia Professional League

Halifax Socials
Halifax Standards
Stellarton
Westville

Other than a couple of pages in Colin Howell’s Northern Sandlots: A Social History of Maritime Baseball book, very little if known of this league.  Future Chicago White Sox (and Saint John native) Joe Daly batted .400 for the Standards.  Late in the season, the Socials (controversially) added former Major Leaguer Howard Wakefield to their lineup.  After the season, the Standards lost the Maritime championship series, two games to one against the Fredericton Pets of the New Brunswick – Maine League.

1913 New Brunswick & Nova Scotia League

Halifax
Moncton
New Glasgow
Saint John
Stellarton

This league was touched on in my post on the 1913 New Brunswick – Maine League.  The NB & NS League was a proposed league merging the NB – Maine League and the Nova Scotia Professional League.  Was supposed to be a Class D league, operating in Organized Baseball.  It never came to pass, partially due to World War One.  There was also talk of having a professional league compromising of teams from both Maine and the Maritimes.

1924 New Brunswick Professional League

Fredericton
GWVI (Saint John)
Moncton

League died out due to the popularity of local amateur ball.  The highlight of this league’s existance came over Canada Day weekend when the GWVIs took two of three games against the touring Detroit Clowns.

1924 Nova Scotia Professional League

Halifax
Kentville
Middleton
Yarmouth

At least two future Major Leaguers played in this league.  “Jersey” Joe Stripp and Phil Page. Stripp played 11 seasons in the Majors as a first baseman and third baseman.  Page would pitcher four seasons with Detroit and Brooklyn.   It is rumoured that Leo Durocher played under the assumed name of “Ozer”, this is not confirmed.  Durocher, played 17 seasons in the Majors, but is better known for his Hall of Fame managerial career.

Additional Info

Saint John was also a member of the Northeastern League in 1913 (with Bangor, Concord NH, Fitzburg MA, Gloucester MA, Manchester, Portland, and Salem MA).  The city was to have played in the 1901 Provincial League, but did not play.  Also, the city was a member of the Greater Boston Twilight League.  The Saint John team from this league played an exhibition against the Red Sox (in Saint John) on August 26, 1930.

Most of the information for this post came from either the Cities and Leagues Wiki or from the aforementioned Northern Sandlots: A Social History of Maritime Baseball.

 

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