Often called “America’s Favorite Pastime,” baseball was a staple of industrial towns at the turn of the century. The sport of baseball came to America as a culmination of several other games involving a stick and ball from Europe. As the country quickly became more urban and industrial, baseball grew rapidly in popularity.
Baseball opened the door to a much broader range of athletes than other sports of the time. Once considered a “gentleman's game,” baseball became much more blue collar and soon industrial towns had several teams. These teams often played in the evenings after work hours and on the weekends. These teams were comprised not only of men, but there were often women's teams as well.
Factories would field teams and compete in industrial leagues across the country. Westinghouse was no different. With such a large work force, many Westinghouse factories would organize a team for each independent department. On a warm summer evening you may catch the Westinghouse Machine Shop competing against the Westinghouse Maintenance Shop. Baseball kept the employees in good spirits and relatively healthy as well. These ideals of ensuring happy and healthy employees were some of the key ideals that made George Westinghouse the American icon he was.
Photos courtesy of the Hagley Archive.