Arts, Culture, and Humanities

Friends of Vintage Base Ball

  • Hartford, CT
  • www.friendsofvintagebaseball.org

Mission Statement

The Friends of Vintage Base Ball promotes living history by bringing the 19th century to life through base ball events that use the rules, equipment, costumes and culture of the 1860s-1880s. We provide cultural enrichment and education programs and activities to youth and adults that emphasize honor, team play, respectful conduct and community pride. Our goal is to exemplify to youth and adults alike the values that are lacking in modern-day athletic programs, and encourage a sense of belonging regardless of race, gender, religious conviction or physical ability.
 
As a member of the Coltsville Ad Hoc Committee, the Friends of Vintage Base Ball supports the effort to designate Coltsville as a National Historic Park and anticipates contributing significantly to the national park visitor experience as a living history event.

Main Programs

  1. Living HIstory

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Service Areas

Self-reported

National

Our primary base of programming is in the Coltsville National Historic Landmark area of Hartford, CT. Upon request, we provide presentations, lectures and/or youth programs throughout Connecticut and the region at historical societies, museums, youth organizations, community centers and other public venues.

ruling year

2010

Principal Officer since 2009

Self-reported

None None

Keywords

Self-reported

living history, cultural, educational, youth, reenactment

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EIN

26-4310669

 Number

8230104264

Physical Address

209 Fairfield Avenue c/o O'Maxfield

Hartford, CT 06114 2205

Contact

Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Historical Societies and Related Activities (A80)

Youth Development Programs (O50)

Community, Neighborhood Development, Improvement (S20)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990-N.

Programs + Results

How does this organization make a difference?

Overview

Self-reported by organization

In the past six years, the Friends of Vintage Base Ball has
• drawn regional visitors from all over the Northeast into Hartford, Connecticut
• had a positive economic impact on the neighborhood and city
• introduced visitors to the Coltsville National Historic Park
• informed on the history of base ball
• informed on the history of Samuel and Elizabeth Colt, 19th century industrialists
• informed on Hartford's industrial heritage
• provided positive role models for youth
• provided family-friendly activities at no cost that are fun and educational
• given lectures, demonstrations and/or workshops on base ball in the Civil War, Hartford's base ball history and Town Ball for Youth
• commemorated the site of the Hartford Base Ball Grounds (the oldest extant professional ballfield that is still unbuilt) with markers at the original placements of Home, First, Second and Third bases, and the Pitcher's Box
• spearheaded the effort to have Daniel Lucius "Doc" Adams, an original New York Knickerbocker and one of the fathers of the modern game of baseball, inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, NY
• Created 'Elizabeth Colt Day' to honor the woman who, upon her husband's death in 1862, took over running of the huge manufacturing facility that kept thousands employed, in a time when women could not even vote
• gave a presentation at the National Baseball Hall of Fame during the 2014 Frederick Ivor-Campbell 19th Century Base Ball Conference on Doc Adams and the New York Knickerbockers
• gave a presentation at John Jay College in New York City on Doc Adams and the New York Knickerbockers

Programs

Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Program 1

Living HIstory

Each week at The Hartford Base Ball Grounds at Colt Meadows, events demonstrating base ball during the time of the U.S. Civil War are held. Teams of the Coltsville Vintage Base Ball League use the costumes, equipment, customs and culture of the 1860s to play two games of base ball. Between games, a youth activity period is held wherein kids are invited on to the field to interact with players and take a turn at swinging a wooden bat at a lemon peel ball.

Category

Arts, Culture & Humanities

Population(s) Served

General Public/Unspecified

Budget

$12,000.00

Charting Impact

Self-reported by organization

Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

  1. What is the organization aiming to accomplish?
    Create an authentic reproduction 19th century base ball playing field with grandstands within the bounds of, and as part of the Visitor Experience to, Coltsville National Historic Park in Hartford, Connecticut. This facility would honor the original Hartford Base Ball Club, one of only eight teams to be invited to join the National League in 1876. It would serve as a significant part of visitor experience by bringing base ball matches with teams in reproduction costumes and using authentic reproduction equipment, customs and culture of the 19th century.
  2. What are the organization's key strategies for making this happen?
    • Raise awareness of the early history of the modern game through lectures, demonstrations and actual games
    • Work with the National Park Service as well as local and state officials on the placement and plan of such a structure
    • Work with federal and state government, arts and cultural organizations and local businesses to raise capital
    • Stage small-scale events on-site to elevate public enthusiasm
    • Contract with architect well-versed in 19th century base ball grandstand structures
    • Hold fund-raising events to finance project
    • Build the ballfield
    • Play ball!
  3. What are the organization's capabilities for doing this?
    We have already raised public awareness significantly over the past 5 to 6 years, as well as have put on lectures, demonstrations and actual games. We are currently working with the National Park Service personnel who are on-site on other Coltsville National HIstoric Park matters and have garnered interest and support in incorporating vintage ball into the park. It is anticipated that it may take 5 to 7 years before Coltsville NHP is fully operational. Therefore, we have our time frame established in order to achieve the necessary steps in order to reach our goal.
  4. How will they know if they are making progress?
    Key to our success is the support of city, state and federal officials. Congressman John Larsen, during 2014 in testifying on behalf of the establishment of the designation, mentioned vintage base ball as part of Coltsville. Current Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra also mentioned vintage base ball in his testimony to congress in support of the Coltsville act. In 2010, the Coltsville Vintage Base Ball League was established. In 2014, its name was trademarked. We have sponsored vintage games in Coltsville that drew visitors in from around the regional and inquiries as far away as California.
  5. What have and haven't they accomplished so far?
    Because our goal is intrinsically linked to the establishment of the national historic park, our progress since 2009 has been slowed by the obstacles and delays experienced in pushing the Coltsville act through Congress. We have also run into some issues with Hartford city hall due to a tremendous turnover in personnel and lack of continuity therein, which has put us back to Square One more than once. Despite these discouragements, now that the Coltsville NHP is a reality, we are certain that such obstacles will not longer be an issue.
Service Areas

Self-reported

National

Our primary base of programming is in the Coltsville National Historic Landmark area of Hartford, CT. Upon request, we provide presentations, lectures and/or youth programs throughout Connecticut and the region at historical societies, museums, youth organizations, community centers and other public venues.

Social Media

Funding Needs

We rely upon donations, sponsorships and grants to fund our programs as well as administrative operations. Specific areas include: full-time executive director - $60,000 part-time education and community outreach coordinator - $35,000 seasonal field operations manager - $15,000 supplies for teams of the Coltsville Vintage Base Ball League (costumes and equipment) - $2,000 per team for 5 teams

Videos

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Financials

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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Friends of Vintage Base Ball

Leadership

NEED MORE INFO ON THIS NONPROFIT?

Free: Gain immediate access to the following:
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  • Forms 990 for 2014, 2013 and 2012
  • Board Chair and Board Members
  • Access to the GuideStar Community
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Principal Officer

None None

Governance

BOARD CHAIR

Karen O'Maxfield

No Affiliation

Term: Jan 2011 - Dec 2011

BOARD LEADERSHIP PRACTICES

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section, which enables organizations and donors to transparently share information about essential board leadership practices. Self-reported by organization

Yes

BOARD ORIENTATION & EDUCATION

Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?

Yes

CEO OVERSIGHT

Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?

Yes

ETHICS & TRANSPARENCY

Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?

Yes

BOARD COMPOSITION

Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?

Yes

BOARD PERFORMANCE

Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?