Query: "ground-rent man" (baseball, 1908)

Gerald Cohen gcohen at UMR.EDU
Sat Jun 29 17:06:24 UTC 2002

   First, my thanx for clarifying the throwing out of a gold baseball
to start the 1913 season of the San Francisco Seals. Yes, not only is
California the Golden State, but I found a specific reference to San
Francisco as the Golden City. Sutter's Mill (where gold was
discovered in 1848) was somewhere near modern-day San Francisco,
although I'm not sure just of the exact location.

    I now have a new query: "ground-rent man" in a baseball context.
The newspaper _San Francisco Bulletin_ present the following item,

>    April 4, 1913, p.20/3; 'Birthday Extra.  Congratulations To Tris
>Speaker'; 'He became a professional ball player in 1906, when he
>joined the Cleburne, Tex., team.  In 1907 he played with the Houston
>team.  At the close of the season he was purchased by [the] Boston
>[Red Sox] and turned over to Little Rock the following spring as
>ground-rent man, the Red Sox having trained on the Little Rock

     What is the meaning of "ground-rent man" here?  OED gives two
definitions for "ground-rent" (presented right after my  signoff),
but neither one seems appropriate.  Any help would be much

Gerald Cohen

(OED, "ground-rent"):
     The rent paid to the owner of land which is let for building
upon. Also U.S. (see quot. 1856).

   1667 PRIMATT City & C. Build. 35 Fifty pounds per ann. is but a
reasonable ground-rent for a House that will cost five
hundred pounds..and yield one hundred pounds per annum. 1682 N. O.
Boileau's Lutrin IV. 292 Fifty Marks a year in
Ground-Rents. 1701 Lond. Gaz. No. 3712/4 The Ground Rent [is] but
10s. per Annum. 1776 ADAM SMITH W.N. V. ii.
(1869) II. 436 Ground rents are a still more proper subject of
taxation than the rent of houses. 1834 West Ind. Sketch Bk.
II. 158 A great convenience..to the tenants, in all questions of
ground-rent. 1856 BOUVIER Law Dict., Ground rent, in
Pennsylvania this term is used to signify a perpetual rent issuing
out of some real estate. 1863 FAWCETT Pol. Econ. II. vii.
(1876) 621 The occupier of a house pays a ground-rent to the owner of the land.

     b. A piece of land rented for building on. Obs.

   1714 GAY Shepherd's Week, Proeme, As a London mason, who
calculateth his work for a term of years, when he
buildeth with old materials upon a ground-rent that is not his own,
which soon turneth to rubbish and ruins.

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