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Visiting Edenton’s Hicks Field

Edenton SteamersUsed as a pro, spring-training and summer-collegiate ballpark, Hicks Field in Edenton, N.C., has quite the interesting history — a history that dates back to 1723, when the site was first used for sporting events as a racetrack.

Funded with WPA money, the ballpark has been maintained through the years and is now home to the Edenton Steamers (summer collegiate; Coastal Plain League). It hosted a team in the original Coastal Plain League and was used for minor-league spring training by the likes of the Binghamton Triplets and the Reading Chicks.

Chris Kudialis laid out a nice history of the ballpark at the News Observer:

The N.C. landmark is built on what was originally a horse racing track. Robert Hicks owned the land and donated three acres to the town’s school system in 1723. After he died in 1733, the school system was free to use the land however it wanted.

In the spring of 1939, Edenton joined Elizabeth City, Oak Town, Plymouth, Perrytown, and Scotland Neck to form the six-team Albemarle League. Originally without a nickname, the team became the Colonials in 1946 and joined the original Coastal Plain League in 1952, before folding after the season….

The field’s most notable moment came on April 16, 1942, when Hall of Fame pitcher Bob Feller came to Edenton. Feller, who had become a star with the Cleveland Indians before enlisting in the Navy in December 1941, led the Norfolk Naval Reserve team to Hicks Field to play against Binghamton.


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