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White Sox-Giants World Tour: Feb. 13, 1914

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Tourists close out three full days in Rome without playing a game thanks to awful weather

The Forum in Rome
The Forum in Rome
Library of Congress
Feb. 13, 1914 in Rome: Rainout

The White Sox and Giants were ready to play baseball for three days in Rome, and all they got were some lousy colds. The clouds never lifted, and the endless supply of cold, damp air made some of the tourists sick -- although not as sick as Charles Comiskey, who had already departed for Paris.

There was an American contingent in Rome that was disappointed by the lack of games, but the tourists otherwise avoided the sadness or scorn from locals that they endured in other places (Adelaide, for instance). They were probably more disappointed, because they wanted to play in Rome and cross it off their lists. Alas.

You get the sense that the city started to wear on them a little, or at least their wallets. From Joe Farrell in The Sporting News:

About the third day in Rome it was ascertained that the idea of the famous American bucket brigade use to such good advantage by our forefathers in extinguishing fires in rural towns was taken from the present day system of tipping in the city that formerly ruled the world. Rome exists on tips. In this instance the chauffeurs, cab drivers, postcard boys, coral venders, hotel front door openers, rosary sellers, museum custodians, tramp guides, church entrance beggars, church exit beggars, elevator man that takes you up, elevator boy that takes you down, chambermaid that shakes the bed, chambermaid that makes the bed, the waiters in the dining hall, the clerk that hands the key, the boy that takes your grip away, the maid that serves the tea, these and a thousand more constitute the tipping brigade. The traveler is the bucket.

The only one who lucked out was Jack Sheridan, the umpire who missed the boat from Alexandria, Egypt, due to mummies. He didn't miss out on any games in Rome, but his luck was about to be pressed further. From James E. Elfers' "The Tour To End All Tours":

The tourists also heard from the missing Jack Sheridan once more. The umpire missed Rome entirely; now he sent word that he would not make Nice, France, either. Sheridan had indeed missed every other connection to Europe and had to await the return of the Prinz Heinrich. He planned to catch an express train to Paris as soon as setting foot in Naples in order to rejoin the teams and resume his officiating duties.

The tourists left Rome at 6:30 p.m. today, boarding a train for a 15-hour ride to Nice. Rain escorted them on the way out.

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