Is this the first ever picture of a Baseball game? The New York Times thinks it is.
Presidential historian Michael Beschloss gives more context on Times blog The Upshot. The photo, taken in 1862, was taken by a Concord, NH photographer, who was trying to capture the Civil War unit seen in the front of the image.
It was the second year of the Civil War, and the scene was Fort Pulaski, Ga., which stood on an island at the mouth of the Savannah River. After falling to the Confederacy in 1861, the fortress had been bombarded for 30 hours and seized back in April 1862, preventing the rebels from using the vital port of Savannah. Like an increasing number of both rebel and Union soldiers, Pulaski's warriors were encouraged to divert themselves from time to time by turning to baseball.
Beschloss continues, piercing two of the most common baseball origin stories. Abner Doubleday did not invent the game, and Abraham Lincoln did not praise it on his death bed.