Alexander "Alick" Joy Cartwright Jr. (April 17, 1820 – July 12, 1892) was a founding member of the New York Knickerbockers Base Ball Club in the 1840s. Although he was an inductee of the Baseball Hall of Fame and he was sometimes referred to as a "father of baseball," the importance of his role in the development of the game has been disputed.
The rules of the modern game were long considered to have been based on the Knickerbocker Rules developed in 1845 by Cartwright and a committee from the Knickerbockers. However, later research called this scenario into question.
After the myth of Abner Doubleday having invented baseball in Cooperstown in 1839 was debunked, Cartwright was inducted into the Hall of Fame as a pioneering contributor, 46 years after his death. Although it has been stated that Cartwright was officially declared the inventor of the modern game of baseball by the 83rd United States Congress on June 3, 1953, the Congressional Record, the House Journal, and the Senate Journal from June 3, 1953, did not mention Cartwright.
Cartwright in 1855
|Born: Alexander Joy Cartwright Jr.|
April 17, 1820
New York City, US
|Died: July 12, 1892 (aged 72)|
Honolulu, O'ahu, Kingdom of Hawai'i
|Career highlights and awards|
|Member of the National|
|Baseball Hall of Fame|
|Election Method||Centennial Committee|
Cartwright was born in 1820 to Alexander Cartwright Sr. (1784–1855), a merchant sea captain, and Esther Rebecca Burlock Cartwright (1792–1871). Alexander Jr. had six siblings. He first worked at the age of 16 in 1836 as a clerk for a Wall Street broker, later doing clerical work at the Union Bank of New York. After hours, he played bat-and-ball games in the streets of Manhattan with volunteer firefighters. Cartwright himself was a volunteer, first with Oceana Hose Company No. 36, and then Knickerbocker Engine Company No. 12. Cartwright's ancestor Edward Cartwright immigrated from Devonshire, England to New England around 1661. Cartwright married Eliza Van Wie, from Albany, on June 2, 1842.
A fire destroyed the Union Bank in 1845, forcing Cartwright to find other work. He became a bookseller with his brother, Alfred.
One of the earliest known established clubs was the Gotham Base Ball Club, who played a brand of bat-and-ball game often called "town ball" or "round ball," but in New York more usually "base ball," somewhat similar to but not identical to the English sport of rounders, on a field at 4th Avenue and 27th Street. In 1837, Gotham member William R. Wheaton drew up rules converting this playground game into a more elaborate and interesting sport to be played by adults. In 1842, Cartwright led the establishment of the Knickerbocker Base Ball Club (named after the Knickerbocker Fire Engine Company), a breakaway group from the Gothams.
In 1845, a committee from the new club including Wheaton (but not Cartwright) drew up rules resembling those of the Gothams. The major precepts included the stipulations that foul territories were to be introduced for the first time, and the practice of retiring a runner by hitting him with a thrown ball was forbidden. Cartwright is also erroneously credited for introducing flat bases at uniform distances, three strikes per batter, and nine players in the outfield. However, modern scholarship has cast doubt on the originality of these rules, as information has come to light about the New York clubs that predated the Knickerbockers, in particular the rules devised by William R. Wheaton for the Gotham Club in 1837. Baseball historian Jeffrey Kittel has concluded that none of the Knickerbocker Rules of 1845 was original, with the possible exception of three-out innings. As MLB's Official Historian John Thorn wrote, Cartwright has "a plaque in the Baseball Hall of Fame on which every word of substance is false. Alex Cartwright did not set the base paths at ninety feet, the sides at nine men, or the game at nine innings." 
The first clearly documented match between two baseball clubs under these rules took place on June 19, 1846, at Elysian Fields in Hoboken, New Jersey. In this match, the Knickerbockers lost to the "New York nine" (probably the parent Gotham Club) by a score of 23 to 1. Some authors have also questioned the supposed "first game" under the new rules. The Knickerbockers' scorebook shows intra-club games during 1845; the New York Base Ball Club played at least three games against a Brooklyn club in 1845 also, but the rules used are unknown. Those who have studied the score-book have concluded that the differences in the games of 1845 and 1846, compared with the specifications of the Knickerbocker rules, are minimal.
In 1849, Cartwright headed to California for the gold rush, and then continued on to work and live in the Kingdom of Hawaii. His family came to join him in 1851: wife Eliza Van Wie, son DeWitt (1843–1870), daughter Mary (1845–1869), and daughter Catherine (Kate) Lee (1849–1851). In Hawaii, sons Bruce Cartwright (1853–1919) and Alexander Joy Cartwright III (1855–1921) were born. Some secondary sources claim Cartwright set up a baseball field on the island of Oahu at Makiki Field in 1852, but Nucciarone states that before 1866, the modern game of baseball was not known or even played in Honolulu. Also, she states that during Cartwright's lifetime he was not declared or documented as an originator of baseball in Hawaii.
Cartwright served as fire chief of Honolulu from 1850 through June 30, 1863. He was an advisor to King David Kalākaua and Queen Emma. Cartwright died on July 12, 1892, six months before the overthrow of the Hawaiian monarchy in 1893. One of the leaders of the overthrow movement was Lorrin A. Thurston, who played baseball with classmate Alexander Cartwright III at Punahou School. He was buried in Oahu Cemetery.
After about two decades of controversy, invention of America's "national game" of baseball was attributed to Abner Doubleday by the Mills Commission (1905–1907). Some baseball historians promptly cried foul and others joined throughout the 20th century. Cartwright was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1938.
New York City librarian Robert W. Henderson documented Cartwright's contributions to baseball in his 1947 book Bat, Ball, and Bishop. Although there is no question that Cartwright was a prominent figure in the early development of baseball, some students of baseball history have suggested that Henderson and others embellished Cartwright's role. The primary complaint is that touting Cartwright as the "true" inventor of the modern game was an effort to find an alternative single individual to counter the "invention" of baseball by Abner Doubleday.
Cartwright was the subject of a 1973 biography, The Man Who Invented Baseball, by Harold Peterson. He was the subject of two biographies written in 2009. Jay Martin's Live All You Can: Alexander Joy Cartwright & the Invention of Modern Baseball supports Cartwright as the inventor of baseball, while Alexander Cartwright: The Life Behind the Baseball Legend by Monica Nucciarone credits Cartwright as one of the game's pioneers but not its sole founder. The 2004 discovery of a newspaper interview with fellow Knickerbocker founder William R. Wheaton cast doubt on Cartwright's role. Wheaton stated that most of the rules long attributed to Cartwright and the Knickerbockers had in fact been developed by the older Gotham Club before the Knickerbockers' founding.
In 2016, experts verified the authenticity of a set of documents titled "Laws of BaseBall" written in 1857 by New York Knickerbockers president Daniel "Doc" Adams after a discussion with executives of 14 other New York-area clubs. The documents established the rules of the game, including nine innings, nine players on the field and 90-foot basepaths. Cartwright was not a participant at the 1857 meeting, as he was living in Hawaii.
Events from the year 1820 in the United States.1846 in the United States
Events from the year 1846 in the United States. In this year, the United States declares war on Mexico, starting the Mexican–American War.1892 in baseball
The following are the baseball events of the year 1892 throughout the world.1938 Major League Baseball season
The 1938 Major League Baseball season.Alexander Cartwright (academic)
Alexander N. Cartwright is a US academic and the current chancellor of the University of Missouri in Columbia, Missouri.Baseball in Greece
Baseball in Greece is regulated by the Hellenic Amateur Baseball Federation (HABF), which was founded in 1997. HABF overseas is represented by one league known as the Greek Baseball league. Greece is represented in international play by the Greek National Baseball Team. 56-game regular season.Baseball in South Korea
Baseball is believed to have been introduced to Korea in 1905 by American missionaries during the Korean Empire, after which it gradually attained prominence. It is one of the most popular sports in the country. There are 10 pro teams in the Korea Baseball Organization. Baseball season runs from March to October.Baseball in Spain
The main ruling organization regarding baseball in Spain is the Royal Spanish Baseball and Softball Federation (Real Federación Española de Béisbol y Sófbol).Cartwright (surname)
Cartwright is an English surname that originally means a maker of carts. Notable people with the surname include:
Alan Cartwright (born 1945), British musician
Alexander Cartwright (1820–1892), American engineer and supposed inventor of baseball
Angela Cartwright (born 1952), British-born American actress
Ann Cartwright (born 1925), British statistician and socio-medical researcher
Anthony Cartwright (cricketer) (born 1940), New Zealand cricketer
Anthony Cartwright (writer) (born 1973), British novelist
Arnaud Cartwright Marts (1888–1970), American academic, president of Bucknell University (1935–1945)
Bec Cartwright (born 1983), Australian actress and singer
Ben Cartwright (disambiguation), multiple people
Bill Cartwright (born 1957), American basketball player
Bill Cartwright (disambiguation), several people
Brian Cartwright (born 1948), American lawyer and astrophysicist
Bryce Cartwright (born 1994), Australian Rugby League player
Buns Cartwright (1887–1976), English cricketer and soldier
Carol A. Cartwright, American academic, president of Kent State University (1991–2006) and Bowling Green State University (2008)
Casimir Cartwright van Straubenzee (1867–1956), British soldier
Christopher Cartwright (1602–1658), English clergyman
Cyril Cartwright, British cyclist
D. F. Cartwright (1916–2009), British soldier, businessman and commercial fisherman
David Cartwright (1920–1997), tenth Suffragan Bishop of Southampton
Dave Cartwright (born 1943), British musician and author
Deirdre Cartwright, British guitarist
Ed Cartwright (1859–1933), American baseball player
Edward David Cartwright (1920–1997), British bishop, Bishop of Southampton (1984–1989)
Edmund Cartwright (1743–1823), British clergyman and inventor of the power loom
Erik Cartwright (born 1950), musician
Fairfax Cartwright (1823–1881), British politician
Fairfax Leighton Cartwright (1857–1928), British author and diplomat, Ambassador to Austria-Hungary (1908–1913)
Gary Cartwright (born 1952), former Australian politician
Geoff Cartwright, Australian actor
George Cartwright (disambiguation), multiple people
Greg Cartwright (born 1970), American musician
Mrs H. Cartwright (fl.1776 -1787), British writer
Hannah Cartwright, a.k.a. Augustus Ghost, vocalist for Snow Ghosts
Harold Cartwright (born 1951), English cricketer
Hilton Cartwright (born 1990), Zimbabwean-Australian cricketer
Hubert James Cartwright (1900–1958), Roman Catholic coadjutor bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Wilmington
Hugh Cartwright (died 1572), English politician
Ian Cartwright (born 1964), English footballer
James Cartwright (born 1949), American soldier, eighth Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
James Cartwright (canoeist) (born 1976), Canadian canoeist
Jim Cartwright (born 1958), English dramatist
John Cartwright (disambiguation), multiple people
Joe Cartwright (rugby league), English rugby league player
Joseph Cartwright (disambiguation), multiple people
Justin Cartwright (1945–2018), British novelist
Julia Cartwright Ady (1851–1924), British art critic
Kelly Cartwright (born 1989), Australian athlete
Kit Cartwright (born 1954), American football administrator and a former American football player and coach
Lee Cartwright (born 1972), English footballer
Lionel Cartwright (born 1960), American country musician
Lisa Cartwright, American scholar of visual culture
Lynn Cartwright (1927–2004), American actress
Mark Cartwright (born 1973), English footballer
Matt Cartwright (born 1961), American lawyer and politician representing the 8th district of Pennsylvania in the US House of Representatives
Mary Cartwright (1900–1998), British mathematician
Nancy Cartwright (born 1957), American voice actress
Nancy Cartwright (philosopher) (born 1943), American philosopher
Oscar Ling Cartwright (1900–1983), American entomologist who specialized in scarab beetles
Peggy Cartwright (1912–2001), Canadian silent-era actress
Peter Cartwright (disambiguation), multiple people
Philip Cartwright (1880-1955), English cricketer
Randy Cartwright (born 1951), American animator
Rianti Cartwright (born 1983), Indonesian actress, model and television presenter
Richard Cartwright (disambiguation), multiple people
Robert Cartwright, art director
Rock Cartwright (born 1979), American football player
Ryan Cartwright (born 1981), British actor
Samuel Cartwright (1789–1864), British dentist
Samuel A. Cartwright (1793–1863), Confederate States of America physician
Silvia Cartwright (born 1943), New Zealand lawyer, 18th Governor-General of New Zealand (2001–2006)
Steve Cartwright, American computer and video game designer
Stephen Cartwright (1947–2004), British illustrator
Thomas Cartwright (disambiguation), multiple people
Tom Cartwright (1935–2007), English cricketer
Veronica Cartwright (born 1949), English actress
Vincent Cartwright (1882–1965), English rugby union player and cricketer
Walter Cartwright (1871-????), English footballer
Wilburn Cartwright (1892–1979), American lawyer and politician
William Cartwright (disambiguation), multiple peopleDuncan Curry
Duncan Fraser Curry (November 28, 1812 – April 1894) was an American baseball pioneer and insurance executive.
Curry was the first president of the Knickerbockers Base Ball Club, reported to be the first organized baseball club in 1845. He is also credited with participating in the drafting of the Knickerbocker Rules, the first written set of official baseball rules. He also served on the game's various rules committees from 1845 until at least 1856.
Curry was also one of the founders of the Republic Fire Insurance Company and served as its secretary from 1852 to 1882.Elysian Fields, Hoboken, New Jersey
Elysian Fields in Hoboken, New Jersey is believed to be the site of the first organized baseball game, giving Hoboken a strong claim to be the birthplace of baseball.Frank Turk
Frank Turk (1817/18 – July 15, 1887) was an American politician, jurist and entrepreneur. He was noted as a pioneer of the city of San Francisco, California, and Turk Street there was named after him.
He was born in Stamford, Connecticut, and studied law in New York City. He worked in New York City post office under John Lorimer Graham. While in New York he belonged to the New York Knickerbockers, the original modern baseball club, and with fellow Knickerbocker Alexander Cartwright traveled to San Francisco in 1849 as part of the California Gold Rush; he is credited with Cartwright for bringing the game of baseball to San Francisco. Working in the San Francisco Post Office here under John W. Geary. In August 1849 Frank Turk was elected Vice Alcalde (vice mayor) of San Francisco with John W. Geary as First Alcade. Frank Turk also practiced law, and had as partners at various times Hall McAllister, Mr. Lippitt and J. K. Rose. At one time Frank Turk owned nearly the whole of Nob Hill and a large part of the Las Pulgas ranch, San Mateo county.Hawaii Sports Hall of Fame
The Hawaii Sports Hall of Fame is a sports hall of fame and museum in the U.S. state of Hawaii. According to the hall's official website, it serves as the "state museum for sports history in the islands," and "is best described as an educational repository created to enshrine athletes, pioneers and contributors of Hawai'i's rich sports history." The organization was founded in 1997 and a selection committee meets once a year in December. The flagship exhibition for the hall is located in the Bishop Museum in Honolulu.
The 2016 class, inducted in May 2016, included water polo player Brandon Brooks, decathlete Bryan Clay, soccer player Brian Ching, and brothers Ma'ake Kemoeatu and Chris Kemoeatu for American football.Honolulu Fire Department
The Honolulu Fire Department (HFD) provides fire protection and first responder emergency medical services to the City & County of Honolulu, Hawaii, United States, under the jurisdiction of the Mayor of Honolulu. Founded on December 27, 1850 by Kamehameha III and Alexander Cartwright, the Honolulu Fire Department serves and protects the entire island of O'ahu, covering over 600 square miles (1,600 km2) of territory, home to more than 880,000 residents and over 4 million annual visitors.The HFD is one of just a handful of fire departments in the nation that is Nationally accredited. The Commission on Fire Accreditation International (CFAI) confers Accredited Agency status for a period of five years.Knickerbocker Club
The Knickerbocker Club (known informally as The Knick), is a gentlemen's club in New York City founded in 1871.
The name "Knickerbocker", mainly thanks to writer Washington Irving, was a byword for a New York patrician, comparable to a "Boston Brahmin."National Association of Professional Base Ball Players
The National Association of Professional Base Ball Players (NAPBBP), or known simply as the National Association (NA), was founded in 1871 and continued through the 1875 season. It succeeded and incorporated several professional clubs from the previous National Association of Base Ball Players (NABBP) of 1857-1870, sometimes called "the amateur association"; in turn several of its clubs created the succeeding National League of Professional Baseball Clubs. Later shortened simply to be called the National League, it was founded 1876, the earliest one half of modern Major League Baseball (MLB) in America, with the later competing American League of Professional Base Ball Clubs in 1901, known too as the American League.New York Knickerbockers
The New York Knickerbockers were one of the first organized baseball teams which played under a set of rules similar to the game today. In 1845, the team was founded by Alexander Cartwright, considered one of the original developers of modern baseball. In 1851, the New York Knickerbockers wore the first ever recorded baseball uniforms.Oahu Cemetery
The Oʻahu Cemetery is the resting place of many notable early residents of the Honolulu area. They range from missionaries and politicians to sports pioneers and philosophers. Over time it was expanded to become an area known as the Nuʻuanu Cemetery.Steve Cooke
Steven Cooke (born 1970) is a former professional baseball player who pitched in the Major Leagues from 1992–1994 and 1996-1998. He was named as the LHP in the Topps All-Star Rookie Team in 1993.
Italics denotes players who have been voted in but not yet inducted.