Thursday, September 10, 2015

The Game (Sept. 12, 1931)

EVENT: Baseball game
OPPONENTS: Indian Creek vs Creelsboro
DATE: Saturday, September 12, 1931
LOCATION: Pete Conner farm
Ucum community/Russell Co., Kentucky
(Now under water, Lake Cumberland)
TIME: Afternoon

Some 400 people gathered to watch the baseball game between Indian Creek and Creelsboro. Indian Creek was originally scheduled to play a black team from Burkesville, but that team cancelled. Because it was a last minute notice, Creelsboro could only round up four of its players, however, they managed to find some fill-in players and the game was on.

Here is the play-by-play of the event that transpired that day, as told by three members of the Creelsboro team: Monk Oliver (the batter), Carlos Mann (the third base coach), and Kermit Mann (a runner, who was on third base).

"Oliver fouled the only baseball they had over in an adjoining field. While someone went to get it, George Elmore, who had been standing in a crowd of people along the third base side, near the backstop, came out of the crowd and started walking toward home plate. The day before, someone had sworn out a warrant on him for causing a disturbance. Constable Leo Mann, who had been watching the game from beyond first base, saw Elmore come onto the field and walked out to arrest him. It was reportedly after Elmore said he would only be taken in after the game was over, that Mann drew his gun. The two men began to wrestle over it and as they did, Elmore's buddy, Jasper Hadley, who had also been standing along the third base side, came onto the infield, drew his pistol, and shot Leo Mann. He meant to shoot Mann again, but his second shot accidentally struck Elmore. Leo Mann's nephew, Bill Mann, was standing in the crowd along the first base side. He came running onto the infield yelling at Hadley to stop. He drew his gun and shot at him, but the gun jammed. A second shot struck Hadley, but not before Hadley had fired at him, striking Bill Mann in the neck.

Elmore walked to near home plate before he fell to the ground. Leo Mann fell near where he was shot. Hadley, age 30, walked over to near third base, handed his pistol to Porter Conner, told him he thought he had killed Elmore, then fell to the ground dead. Bill Mann, age 35, walked up on a bank behind first base, where he dropped dead. George Elmore, age 23, was taken to Dr. Ballou's office at Rowena, where he died that evening. Leo Mann, age 35, was taken to Dr. McClendon's office in Russell Springs, where he died the next evening.

The entire episode only lasted one to two minutes. Four men lay dead and only four shots had been fired. None of the ballplayers, nor anyone else, was involved."

That was the last time Pete Conner allowed a baseball game to be played on his farm.

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