Here’s what happened.
The first recorded score for a baseball game in Georgia was tallied on January 3, 1863. The New York Yankees beat the New York Yankees, 20-7. Specifically, a pickup squad from the 48th New York Infantry beat their counterparts from the 47th New York. They played at Fort Pulaski, which was under Union occupation.
Here’s why it matters.
Fort Pulaski was built on Cockspur Island, Georgia as part of an ongoing effort to improve the USA’s shoreline defenses. The Confederacy seized control of the fort in 1861, but never provided enough support for it to accomplish effectively its important mission: the defense of Savannah.
Confederate Colonel Charles Hart Olmstead surrendered Fort Pulaski in 1862 after two days of bombardment from artillery commanded by Union Captain Quincy Adams Gillmore. Rifled cannons, a new military technology, played a vital role. The order to retake Fort Pulaski was given by an officer who would become infamous in Georgia: Brigadier General William Tecumseh Sherman.
Abner Doubleday cannot be confirmed as the actual inventor of baseball. But he and thousands of fellow New Yorkers promoted early versions of the game throughout the South during their service in the Union Army.
Here’s an interesting fact!
As outrage over Andersonville Prison grew, Union forces used Fort Pulaski for the same purpose, and engaged in a brutal game of tit for tat. The collective death toll at both places numbered into thousands, including comrades from a group of Confederate prisoners called The Immortal Six Hundred.