Cubs News

SABR dedicating grave marker to 19th century Cubs star

10 months agoTony Andracki

Halloween may be over, but hanging out in graveyards is still in style.

For one more weekend, at least.

The Society for American Baseball Research (SABR) is dedicating a grave marker for Ed Williamson this Saturday, Nov. 6 at 1 p.m. in Rosehill Cemetery on Chicago’s North Side. It’s part of the 19th Century Grave Marker Project and the event is open to the public.

Williamson was a star for the Cubs organization in the late 1800s, though the franchise was called the Chicago White Stockings at the time he played.

Williamson spent 11 years with the Cubs/White Stockings, appearing in more than 1,000 games from 1879-1889. He hit .260 with a .735 OPS while playing third base and shortstop. He racked up 36.3 WAR over the decade-plus he spent in Chicago.

Williamson’s biggest claim to fame came in 1884 when he smacked 27 home runs. It set a new single-season record and held for 35 years until Babe Ruth hit 29 longballs in 1919.

The Philadelphia native passed away in 1894 at the age of 36 and was buried in Rosehill Cemetary in Chicago. Up until now, it has been an unmarked grave.

SABR is working to change that.

“I’ve known about the story of Ed Williamson for several years and it’s always bothered me that his final resting place was unmarked,” said Sam Gazdziak, chair of the Grave Marker Project. “I’m so glad we can finally right the wrong and give Ed a little recognition.”

For more information on the 19th Century Baseball Grave Marker Project, head to SABR.org.

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