MUSIC - Streets of Philadelphia by Bruce Springsteen
Photographed in 1991, 1994 and 2002 using film. Photographed in 2007 using digital.
DISCLAIMER - Photos WITHOUT my watermark are not mine and were found on the internet. These photos are NOT for sale.
Connie Mack Stadium - Opened April 12, 1909 and closed October 1, 1970. A fire in 1971 destroyed the upper deck. The park was finally torn down in 1976. The site is now deliverance church. Connie Mack Stadium / Shibe park was literally 7 blocks west of old Baker Bowl on Lehigh Avenue.
Known as Shibe Park 1908 - 1953, Connie Mack Stadium 1953 - 1970.
Location - Connie Mack Stadium, N. 21st St., W. Lehigh Ave., N 20th St., W. Somerset St. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Home plate was at the 21st and Lehigh entrance.
Connie Mack Stadium / Shibe Park was known as the "Church of baseball." The plot of land located at 21st Street and Lehigh Avenue in northwest Philadelphia was the home to both the Philadelphia Athletics and the Philadelphia Phillies. Shibe park opened on April 12th, 1909 as the home park to the Philadelphia A's. For 61 seasons it housed countless baseball games, as well as Eagles football.
When it opened, Shibe park (named after A's owner Ben Shibe) was state of the art for the time. It was housed in a residential neighborhood, much like most of the parks were in that time. The A's played there from 1909 till 1954. The A's of Connie Mack won world series in 1910, 1911, 1913, 1929 and 1930. The A's had several hall of famers play at Connie Mack. From their owner / manager Connie Mack to Eddie Collins, Frank "Home Run" Baker, Jimmy Foxx, Eddie Plank, Chief Bender, Rube Waddell, Mickey Cochrane, Lefty Grove and Al Simmons. In the 1954 with money problems and Connie Mack's two sons feuding with each other, the A's were sold and moved to Kansas City.
In 1933, Connie Mack erected a "spite fence" along the right field wall. He was tired of people sitting on the roof's of houses across 20th Street and seeing the games for free.
Due to the decrepit conditions of nearby Baker Bowl, the Phillies moved in as CO-tenants with the A's at Shibe Park. When the A's finally moved, the Phillies took over and remained at the site until October 1, 1970. The Phillies paid homage to Connie Mack by renaming the park in his honor in 1953.
The Philadelphia Eagles of the NFL called Connie Mack home from 1938 till 1970, when they moved to Franklin field at the university of Pennsylvania.
The Phillies rewarded the long suffering Philadelphia fans by getting to the 1950 world series against the Yankees. The "whiz kids" were led by hall of famers Robin Roberts, Jim Konstanty, Richie Ashburn and team favorites "Granny" Hamner, "Puddin head" Jones, Eddie Waitkus, Del Ennis and Andy Semenick. Alas, the whiz kids were not able to bring the first world championship home for the Phillies. They lost 4 straight to New York. The Phillies had one more hurrah at the old park. In 1964, they had a 6 1/2 game lead with 12 to play. They collapsed, losing 10 straight and the pennant to the eventual world champion St. Louis Cardinals.
Finally in 1970 they played their last season at Connie Mack. The neighborhood had deteriorated badly, and crime was everywhere. Muggings and other attacks were common in the area. On October 1, 1970, the final major league baseball game was played here. The Phillies defeated the Montreal Expos 2-1 in 10 innings. Unfortunately, post game ceremonies were canceled due to fans literally ripping the old girl apart.
Connie Mack stadium sat vacant for 6 years. On August 21, 1971, arsonists started a fire that destroyed the upper deck. Finally in 1976, the old lady of the North side was demolished. The lot at 21st and Lehigh sat vacant for 15 years. In 1991 the trash was removed and the Deliverance church was built on the site. A marker on Lehigh Avenue was placed to let people know what once stood on the site.
Disclaimer.....The actual photos of the exteriors and interiors of Connie Mack stadium were not taken by me. I found these photos on the internet.
Connie Mack Stadium site in 1991.
The bar in back of left field.
Connie Mack Stadium seats in Duncan Park in Spartanburg, South Carolina.