US 669139 A
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Patented Mar. 5, l9'0l. G. H. KENT.
WITNESSES- UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE.
GEORGE H. KENT, OEOAMBRIDGE, MASSACHUSETTS.
SPECIFICATION forming part of Letters Patent No. 669,139, dated. March 5, 1901.
Application filed November 1, 1900. Serial No. 35,094. (No model.)
To all whom it may concern.-
Be it known that I, GEORGE H. KENT, a citizen of the United States, residing at Cambridge, in the county of Middlesex and State of Massachusetts, have invented a new and useful Improvement in Games, of which the following is a full, clear, and exact description, reference being had to the accompanying drawings, forming a part of this specification, in explaining its nature.
The invention relates to a means or device for playing the game of base-ball. It comprises a card, board, or support upon which is arranged the customary field and diamond, and the positions of the bases and players are indicated by means for holding removable pegs or men. This applies to the nine men of the infield, as well as to the nine men of the outfield. The game also includes means for propelling a ball at will and a table of directions to be used in connection with said ball-propelling means for governing the playing of the game or the movement of the men.
I will now describe the invention in connection with the drawings, wherein Figure 1 indicates in perspective a View of the card, board, or support upon which the game is played, Fig. 2 showing in side elevation a similar board folded on a middle line.
Referring to the drawings, A represents the conventional diamond; a, the first base; a, the second base; a the third base, and or the home-base; o the pitchers position; o the catchers position; a, the position of the man playing first base; a that of the man playing second base; a that of the third base; a", the short-stop; 0, the left field; a the center field, and a the right field.
b to b inclusive, represent the seats of the infield on one side of the field, and b b and b seats upon the other side. Each of these positions, or as many of them as may be necessary to properly play the game, is adapted to receive and hold a peg representing a man. Any suitable means may be employed. A simple and inexpensive device is an eyeleted hole, and I have represented in the drawings such a device, although I do not confinemyself thereto.
The various plays for the infield are arranged upon one side of the ball-field and the plays for the outfield upon the other side.
These plays are arranged in four sets of columns and contain the instructions of the moves of the men under all the various conditions of the game. One column of instructions governs the play when there are no men on bases, one column when there is one man on bases, one column when there are two men on bases, and one column when there are three men on bases.
In playing the game it will be desirable to use a score-card such as is usuallyemployed in playing the game out of doors in the usual way, and each play as made may be noted on the score-card. A play is determined by the position at which the ball which is played may stop, the directions opposite the stopping-place of the ball in one of the four columns, according to the number of men on bases, being the play which is made upon the board by movement of the men and which may be indicated upon the score-card.
The ball may be operated in any suitable Way. The direction of its course must be controlled to some extent in order that it may move upon a line with the columns and may stop somewhere against or upon them. I have represented as a convenient means for directing the movement of the ball or indicator a wire or support 0, between the two posts 0 c, the wire being arranged at one side of the columns. Upon this wire is mounted a ball or indicator 0, and attached to each post is a spring 0 for propelling the ball. This arrangement to some extent conveys the idea or notion of a pitched and batted ball in that the ball is first delivered in one direction by an initial impulse and is then returned automatically by a second impulse. To use the device, one of the springs is compressed to any'extent desired, the ball placed against it, and the spring released. The ball will then be shot along the wire and against the spring on the opposite end, which is compressed by the blow and at once acts to return the ball toward the first-named spring, and the distance to which the ball will be sent of course depends upon the extent of compression of the initial spring. The place at which the ball will come to rest upon the Wire of course cannot be gaged in advance. It may be in any position along the column or columns between the two posts. Some skill, however,
maybe used in varying the force of the spring, so that the ball may be sent to a desired position for a good play.
I prefer that there be two sets of directions, one for the infield upon one side of the playing-fi'eld andone for the outfield upon the other side of the playing-field, and that there be two ball-propelling devices, one to be used by the infield and one to be used by the outfield and in alternate or any other order, as the sides may determine. I have indicated in the various columns some of the directions employed; but it is not necessary to indicate them all, it being sufficient to say that it is desirable that directions governing all the conditions incident to the playing of the game of base-ball under all its varying phases be used. I would not be understood, however, as limiting myself to the particular arrangement of the columns, or to the special form of directions, or to the specific ball-propelling device shown.
To play the game, the men who are in the outfield may be located in their respective positions, although this is not essential. A man from the infield is placed at the hat. The player who is then playing the infield position places and propels the ball. Its stopping-point against a direction in a column indicates the play to be followed, and it may have been a ball, or a strike, or a foul, or a base-hit, or any other of the usual events which characterize the game when there are no men upon the bases. When there is one man on a base, the play is governed by the direction contained in the column headed One man on bases. When there are two men on bases, the play is taken from the column headed Two men on bases, andgwhen there are three men on bases the play is indicated by the column headed Three men on bases, and if there is no man upon the bases the direction in the No man column will control the play. The ordinary rules of the game apply in all cases and when the infield is out the board is turned and the outfield proceeds to play in the same manner that the infield has played.
It is not necessary that the field have positions for holding the outfield, as the game may be played by using only the positions necessary for advancing the runnersviz., the first, second, third, and home bases. It adds to the interest, however, to have the positions of all the men indicated.
The device for playing the game may be arranged upon a board or support which is not foldable or which may be foldable. I
have represented it as arranged upon a board,
which is foldable upon the longitudinal line D at the center of its width. This permits the device to be embraced in small compass when not in use, and when so constructed I arrange the posts or standards for supporting the wire upon one side out of line of those upon the other, so that they may close by them when the board is folded and not upon them.
I construct each ball or indicator actuating device preferably so that the ball or indicator may have a primary impulse which is handcontrolled and a secondary impulse which is automatic, and also so that either of said impelling devices may be either handoperated or automatic, as may be desired, or
according to the end of the board from which the play is made, the primary impulse sendingthe ball or indicator along the wire or support in one direction and the secondary impulse returning it along the wire or support and toward or to the first, and when this type of propelling device is employed the original propelling impulse may be sufficient to cause the ball or indicator to be returned by secondary impulse to the original propelling device, which will then act automatically to give the ball or indicator a third impulse and return it along the wire. or support in the direction in which it was first moved.
The means for operating the ball or indicator may be. used in conjunction with any game containing directions or phases which are to be picked out by chance by the, coming to a stop or rest of a ball or indicator sub stantially uncontrolled except as to the direction of movement.
, page of said ball will indicate directly the play to be made.
2. In a device or means for playing baseball' or other games, one or more columns of directions governing the play of thegame, a wire or support arranged horizontally lengthwise of said column or columns and in close proximity thereto, and a ball or indicator freely movable upon said wire or support, and means at each end of said wire or support for actuating or returning the ball.
3. In adevice or means for playing thegame of base-ball, one or more columns of directions for governing the play of. the men, a horizontal wire, or support for the ball or indicator located in close proximity to said directions, a ball freely movable thereon, means for giving an impulse to the said ball and an automatic device for returning said ball when impelled against it, whereby said ball will rebound and by its position of'stopping indicate the play to be made.
4. In a device or meansfor playingt-he game of base-ball, one or more columns of directions for governing the play of the men, a horizontal wire or support located in close proximity thereto, a ball or indicator freely movable upon said wire or support and adapted to cooperate with said column or columns, and two springs, one located at each end of said wire, each adapted to give an initial impulse to said ball ora secondary impulse thereto when struck by said ball, as and for the purposes described.
5. In a means or device for playing baseball or similar games, a board foldable at about the center of its length, a field upon said board, positions for receiving men play- I 5'