It is very difficult today to understand
how important baseball once was to the little textile towns like
Glendale. Before the coming of television and modern day
transportation, recreation was largely homegrown. In the 1920’s, 30’s,
40’s and into the 1950’s, textile league baseball was extremely popular
throughout the Piedmont.
Almost all of the Upcountry textile towns had a baseball team and
serious rivalries developed. The level and skill of many of the players
were fantastic. A number of them went on to have successful major
league careers. The most famous of these was Shoeless Joe Jackson who
for Brandon Mills in Greenville. He went to the major leagues to
play. His short career came to and end when he was playing for
the Chicago White Sox when he was caught up in the betting scandal of
1919. The legend of Shoeless Joe continues to grow long after his
death. His ghost was the hero of the movie “Field of Dreams”.
Glendale, too, had its team and baseball park. The baseball field was
located near the Trolley Park, just off Ben Avon Road. There is a
wonderful book titled “Textile League Baseball- South Carolina’s Mill
1880-1955” by Thomas K. Perry. It is published by
McFarland and Company, Inc. The first mention of a Glendale team in
book is that Glendale is shown as an independent team, not in a league,
in 1909 with five of the players being named. They were Reeves, Branch,
Guthrie, Easler and Gosnell. That year the team won 3 games and lost 1.
In 1911, still in not in a league, the team had a bad year. They lost 4
games. The players named are Gossett, Easler, Lockman, Guthrie, Smith,
West, Black, Brown, Parr, Land and Black.
Glendale was in the Spartanburg Mill Baseball League by 1913. Others
that were sometimes in this league were Drayton, Saxon, Whitney,
Converse, Beaumont, Arkwright, Spartan Mill and Arcadia. At about this
time, the Glendale team became known as the “Glendale Tigers.” The 1913
Tigers had a 10 win and 10 loss season. The Glendale players named for
1913 were Gosnell, Mulligan, Allen, Smith, Sanders, Gilmer, Tindall,
McGraw, Bagwell, Lowe, Coleman, Gilmore, Holmes, Gault (Manager),
Mulligan, Reaves, Brown, Murray, Gossett, Guy, Scruggs and Bridgman.
Over the years, Glendale played in other leagues and as an independent
team. The last year the Glendale team is listed in the book is 1951.
They were in the Spartanburg County League and the team name had been
changed to the “Glendale Browns.” The team had a record of 12 wins and
23 losses. The players named for that year were Hammett, Phillips, Bill
Allen, Dick Ogle, Pete Brown, Page,
Chapman, Harvey, Parris Jett,
Harrison, Ralph Dillard, Lavender, Dempsey, Haynes, White, Harrison,
Cooksey, Smith, and Hicks.
The Cooksey, listed above, on the 1951 team, is Arthur Boyd Cooksey.
Arthur Cooksey had a long career in textile baseball. His playing time
spanned almost 20 years, from 1934 to 1953. His
son, Richard, has furnished us
information about the teams he played on and the names of his
teamamtes. This list of teams and players include the Glendale
teams from 1934 through 1938 and 1951. Click on the link below to read
more about these teams.
Richard also furnished us photos of a baseball signed by the
Glendale team of 1936. Click on the link below to see the photos.
The Hammett player listed with the 1951 team above is Charles Hammett.
Today, Charles still lives in Glendale. He had the opportunity
that many boys in the early 1950’s could only dream about. He actually
played for the Glendale baseball team for a short time. He has been
kind enough to share his story with us. Click on the link below to read
The baseball teams were important to the adults of the textile towns
but also to the young boys. Click on the following link for a story
that describes how one of these teams affected one of these boys, my
husband, Gerald Teaster. Although written about the team at Pacolet
Mills, the Trojans, the same can be said about the teams at Glendale,
Clifton, Drayton and the other textile towns of the Upstate.
Many of the textile league players went on to the major leagues. One of
these was Charlie Wood. He played for Glendale in 1932 and Pittsburgh
in the National league. Click on the following link to read more about
baseball players from Spartanburg County who went on to play in the
If you have any stories or photos about the Glendale baseball teams we
invite you to please send them to us at email@example.com
Personal Note from the webmaster- One of my uncles, the late
William “Whitey” Moore was a pitcher for the Drayton team. He was
the husband of my Dad’s sister, Ruth McKinney. He loved to talk about
baseball playing days.
This web site has been started as a
public service to share the story of Glendale. The web master and
person to contact about putting information on the web site is Mary
McKinney Teaster. Contact her at:
or by telephone at (843) 873-8117. See
more information about Mary and her Glendale connection at Mary McKinney Teaster.