Take a stroll around Easton, Maryland and you will find historical landmarks like the Avalon Theatre, the Courthouse, and other historical sites, but one of Easton's most historical sites is no longer around. It used to stand proudly along Hammond Street and Federal Street, not too far from the Talbot
Take a stroll around Easton, Maryland and you will find historical landmarks like the Avalon Theatre, the Courthouse, and other historical sites, but one of Easton's most historical sites is no longer around. It used to stand proudly along Hammond Street and Federal Street, not too far from the Talbot County Historical Society, and was a place where John Franklin "Home Run" Baker, Jimmie Foxx, Homer Smoot, and many more called this stadium home.
Easton was home to one of the first towns to field a baseball team back in 1867. The location of where the Easton team played their games, the Fair plays, is not fully known. There was a gentleman named Dr. Earle who had a field that was outside his house where every Wednesday and Saturday was set aside for gameday. When the Fair plays folded, baseball was played at parks around Easton, such as Idlewood Fairground.
In 1922, The Eastern Shore Baseball League was formed. Easton did not field a team in the inaugural season, but in 1924, Easton baseball fans rejoiced when they heard that a baseball team is coming for the upcoming season. Federal Park was not ready for baseball at the time, with no grandstands for fans. However, it did not stop the community from rolling up their sleeves and building it themselves. Everyone in the community pitched in their supplies and had the field ready for baseball before opening day, slated for May 24, 1924.
Fans typically filled up Federal Park. There were times when the ballpark was more populated than the town. The Easton Farmers were typically in dead last, but they still had tremendous fan support throughout its life. The park was home to all the Easton Teams of the Eastern Shore including the Cubs, Browns, and Yankees.
In 1924, The Parksley Spuds won the Eastern Shore League Pennant. They won the chance to participate in the Five State Series and had Sudlersville native Jimmie Foxx with them for the championship series. They played one game in Federal Park, and it was more than 100% capacity. Foxx received a standing ovation from the fans and then proceeded to hit one of the longest home runs ever recorded at Federal Park in front of many notable people who attended, including MLB Commissioner Kenesaw Mountain Landis.
Federal Park did not see any playoff games with the Farmers due to them being one of the worst teams in the league. However, the Browns made it to the playoffs in 1937 and fell to Centreville Colts in a three-game playoff.
The Yankees made the playoffs in 1941, granting Federal Park the chance to be in the limelight once again. The Yankees swept the Cambridge Cardinals in a best of five before edging Milford in seven games in the best of seven championship series. The Yankees won the pennant again in 1949 for the best record in the league.
Today, Federal Park is no longer present. Where it once stood features homes along Hammond Street and Federal Street as there is no plaque or any historical evidence that shows that Federal Park once stood, but the park still remains a prominent part of baseball history in the minds of locals that happened right here on the Eastern Shore.