Sports Rivalry of Jamestown and Valley City
It is important to recall the intense sports rivalry between Jamestown and Valley City about a century ago. These two cities were fierce competitors in various sports.
The Harsh Description of a Baseball Game
A particular baseball game between Minot and Valley City was described quite harshly, especially with regards to the players from Barnes County. The writers of The Jamestown Alert were not impressed.
False Pretenses and Allegations
The writers expressed their dissatisfaction by stating that the admission to the ballpark in Valley City was “taking money under false pretenses.” They even questioned whether the event should be considered a real baseball game, labeling it as “alleged.”
Unfortunate Weather and a Merciful Umpire
The writers at The Jamestown Alert also remarked on the weather, noting it was a perfect day for baseball. However, they humorously wished that heavy rain had fallen in the first inning to prevent the disaster that followed.
A One-Sided Game: Minot vs. Valley City
The game ultimately concluded with Minot scoring 16 runs while Valley City failed to score a single run. The umpire mercifully ended the game at the end of the eighth inning.
Incorporating Political Humor
The writers cleverly injected some political current events into their description. They compared Minot’s victory to Williams Jennings Bryan, a prominent political figure campaigning for currency reform. They humorously stated that Minot had beaten Bryan 16-1 in terms of runs.
Understanding the Joke
In 1920, readers would have easily understood the joke. Bryan advocated for a monetary system where both gold and silver served as standards, with gold valued at 16 times that of silver. Hence, the witty comparison of Bryan being 16-1, symbolizing Minot’s 16-0 victory over Valley City.
William Jennings Bryan’s Background
William Jennings Bryan, besides his political aspirations, had an extensive career. He served in Congress from Nebraska for many years and later became Woodrow Wilson’s Secretary of State during World War I.
His Beliefs and Controversial Stances
Bryan’s economic theories were rooted in maintaining the connection of American currency to precious metals. However, he also held controversial views opposing the teaching of evolution and the consumption of alcohol.
Bryan’s Unknown Opinion on Blowout Baseball Games
Unfortunately, it is unclear how Bryan felt about blowout baseball games. His opinions on various matters were known, but his stance on this particular topic remains a mystery.
Author Keith Norman can be reached at www.KeithNormanBooks.com