The history on Lincoln minor league baseball is one of primary frustration with a few years of joy and victory. Lincoln pennants include a Western Association one in 1895, a class "D" Nebraska State League pennant in 1923 and a short run of success in the Western league at Sherman field in 1949, 1956 and 1957.
According to a Lincoln paper report during the opening of Sherman field the first professional level ball park in Lincoln was at Durfee Park. The Tree Planters made this park their home in 1886.
In 1887 and 1889 Lincoln played at Athletic Park, then in 1890 they played at Association Park. From 1891-1905 the franchise played at Farmers and Merchants Park. There is some evidence that this is just a renamed Association park when the Farmers and Merchants Bank subsidized additional improvement to the park. There is also some evidence that this park is also Antelope Park/"M" Street park.
The The "M" Street Park (Antelope Park) was the main ballpark in Lincoln from 1906-1918. Since Sunday baseball was outlawed in Lincoln for many years they also played ball at Capitol Beach. A crew would remove chairs and other equipment from the "M" Street park and cart it to Capitol Beach for Sunday contests. This was common until Sunday baseball was allowed in Lincoln in the 1920's.
In 1922, Lincoln built Landis Field. This ballpark was named after Kennesaw Landis, baseball commissioner.
I would appreciate any additional information/pictures of these early parks in Lincoln.
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© 2009 Bruce Esser