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Ballparks That Live On: Crosley Field

Crosley Field mural

Crosley Field opened in 1912 and served as home of the Cincinnati Reds until the middle of the 1970 season. And while the ballpark is long gone, you can find traces of it at the original ballpark site in Ohio–as well as an echo of the old place in nearby Blue Ash.

Crosley Field was the third Reds home built at the same site on the edge of downtown Cincinnati, following League Park (1894-1901) and Palace of the Fans (1902-1911). Originally called Redland Field, the ballpark was renamed by Reds owner Powel Crosley in 1935 and became closely associated with the inventive Crosley. We’ve posted an extensive history of Crosley Field and the many innovations associated with him and his ballpark (click here); this article concerns the ways the ballpark is remembered in the Cincinnati area.

Crosley Field ground rules

The old ballpark site is still a destination for Reds fans and baseball lovers. Now home to City Gospel Mission (1805 Dalton Av.), the site now features plenty of remembrances of the former Reds home. At the City Gospel Mission, you can find:

  • Commemorative mural
  • A self-guided tour for visitors (brochures are available in the lobby)
  • Replica left-field foul pole and right-field foul pole (located in the parking of Nehemiah Manufacturing, which also has memorabilia in its lobby)
  • Replica light tower
  • Historical photos provided by the Reds Hall of Fame and Museum
  • A plaza with replica seats and commemorative bricks
  • Base markers

You’ll find it worth your while to grab a brochure, which details where the ballpark was physically located.

Crosley Field

Crosley Field, 1935

Finally, you have one of the most unique endeavors in the ballpark world with a scaled-down replica of some Crosley Field features at nearby suburban Blue Ash. That effort includes half of an original ticket booth, 400 or so original seats, a replica of the iconic scoreboard and outfield terrace, and the exact dimensions in play when the ballpark hosted its last game on June 24, 1970. It’s not really a replica–a new scoreboard frozen in time, playing field and 400 seats do not a full replica make–but it does capture the spirit of the old place. Other concessions and memorabilia items are located in the nearby Blue Ash Recreation Department building. You can visit the Blue Ash Crosley Field site; it’s at 11540 Grooms Road.

Interestingly, this was not the first attempt to create a Crosley Field replica: another enthusiast had done the same thing years before in Union Park, Kentucky. That effort, which lasted a decade, included the Crosley Field left-field wall, the left-field foul pole, more seats, dugout benches and clubhouse lockers. Alas, much of this effort succumbed to the elements, with some items ending up in Blue Ash. Such is the passion of Crosley Field fans.

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