Many have written to me with their memory of Sulphur Dell, and how those memories were developed. One of the most thoughtful and endearing stories came from Mike Allen. Sadly, Mike passed away in April. I wish he would have known about the redevelopment of Sulphur Dell:
“I remember as a boy going with my dad “Dub Allen” who many know loved the game of baseball. I always knew when we were getting close to the stadium by the strong smell of those livestock barns (y’all know the smell!). I remember walking down those side streets and alleys after we had parked the car. While walking and stepping over railroad tracks I would see that large white gas tank; as a kid that tank really looked big! Once we walked into the stadium, we always sat out in the right field section sort of behind first base.
“I remember smelling the cigar and pipe smoke that always smelled sort of good to me, and the hard, old wooden seats where you almost always would get a splinter (especially as a kid that was up and down all through the game like most kids). A couple of times I had to sit behind a large pole and watch the game. The old tire sign that hung out in right center that read “$50.00 if you hit a home run” through always was exciting. My dad seemed to know everybody and it would take us an hour to walk back to the car due to all the chit-chat with friends.
“The last day I was with my dad before he passed away in the summer of 2000 we drove to the site of Sulphur Dell. What made me want to pull into the parking lot was when he saw the old Atlantic Ice house that stood behind right field. He had just told me that he once got a ball out of the gutter there when he was a kid. I could tell he was excited to see the old site of Sulphur Dell, so I pulled into the State parking lot and stopped about where I figured the pitcher’s mound was. He said he had many great memories as a child himself as a part-time bat boy and as a spectator. I told him I can sit here and look around and see the old field. I could sort of see the old infield in my mind, the noise, and I even seemed to begin smelling that old cigar and pipe smell.
“We were quiet when we pulled out of the lot and were both smiling with those wonderful memories that we had just shared together for the last time.”