As part of our new collection, Baseball Cathedrals - today we introduce you to the home of the Detroit Wolves and Detroit Stars - Hamtramck Stadium.
BIRTH OF A BASEBALL CATHEDRAL
Hamtramck Stadium opened in 1930 at the cost of $100,000. As originally built it would seat 8,000 people, and another 1,000 in the right field bleachers. Over time, and renovations, the capacity was reduced significantly. The field was 315 feet to left field, 515 to center and 407 right.
The team housed the Detroit Stars of the Negro National League until the league's closure in 1931. The stadium was the site of the deciding games of the 1930 Negro National League Championship Series, with the St. Louis Stars defeating the Detroit Stars in seven games.
By 1932, a new league was formed, the East-West League, and a new team was formed in Detroit - the Detroit Wolves. The league and team were short lived, and by 1933, the Detroit Stars were back, but like the Wolves only lasted one season.
The stadium would again showcase the Stars during the 1937 season.
POST NEGRO LEAGUES
After the height of the Negro Leagues, the stadium would be used for many activities, including football games featuring local High Schools and HBCU's.
The city of Hamtramck acquired the stadium in 1940 and renovated the stadium and surrounding area, and would be used by High School's and Little League teams.
16 future Hall of Fame members played at Hamtramck Stadium, including Turkey Stearnes, Willie Wells, Mule Suttles, Cool Papa Bell, Josh Gibson and Satchel Paige.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
In 2019, British Artist Andy Brown became the first to paint all 30 MLB ballparks live during a single season. To date he has painted over 90 ballparks, in 9 countries, all within 9 innings. This collection celebrates the Baseball Cathedrals of the Negro Leagues. Within his work he aims to capture the atmosphere and experience of the ballpark along with their importance to our collective identity, history and culture. His work has received recognition from the BBC, ESPN, MLB Network, Fox Sports, Buckingham Palace and others. It is also held in the collections of museums, teams, fans and art lovers worldwide - there is also a question about his work in the board game Trivial Pursuit.
Graphic Design by Jillian Brown