Rens vs. 12th Streeters, Black Fives Vintage Basketball Cage Game Re-Enactment

On November 9, 2007, in Business, Community, Culture, Music, NBA, Race, Relationships, by Black Fives Foundation

Recently, Converse and Black Fives staged a vintage basketball cage game re-enactment — a game between the New York (Harlem) Rens and the Washington (DC) 12 Streeters played inside a wire mesh cage. These are some of the highlights presented in a slide show: The game was played according to vintage Black Fives Era rules: […]

Recently, Converse and Black Fives staged a vintage basketball cage game re-enactment — a game between the New York (Harlem) Rens and the Washington (DC) 12 Streeters played inside a wire mesh cage.

These are some of the highlights presented in a slide show:

The game was played according to vintage Black Fives Era rules: there was a center jump after each made basket, and a player who had already dribbled the basketball could no longer shoot. Additional vintage basketball rules can be viewed here.

Vintage basketball cage
An actual vintage cage game circa 1910

This event was produced as a backdrop for Converse’s international sales meeting, but it was also a rehearsal to find out whether or not vintage cage games could be entertaining to watch, easy to stage, fun, and educational too.

For example, what if we staged such an event at a YMCA or at a playground, had a DJ spinning, food and beverages, merchandise, two vintage squads set up in full throwback gear, and included a clinic on the old rules as well as modern day tips, and even had a history lecture combined with a motivational piece.

Would you be interested in attending? What else would you want to see as part of the event?

PS – The above video is also the very first one on our new YouTube channel, which you can visit at YouTube.com/BlackFivesTube.

Photos: Courtesy of Converse and Black Fives, Inc.
Music: Jersey Jump Off performed by Cozy Cole on The Legends of Savoy

6 Responses to “Rens vs. 12th Streeters, Black Fives Vintage Basketball Cage Game Re-Enactment”

  1. Claire says:

    I’m sorry I missed it. it would have been fun to see this.

  2. Gunner says:

    As captain of the Westfield Wheelmen Vintage Base Ball Club I think you have a good thing started. There has been a big movement over the past 10 years of historic base ball re-creation. Its a great thing to teach the game as it started.

    Good Luck

  3. Claude says:

    Hey Gunner! Thank you very much. That means a lot coming from someone like you who’s already been down this road.

    I checked out your Westfield Wheelmen website and your Captain’s blog too!

    I took my kids to Historic Greenfield Village in Detroit and they had vintage “ballists” playing on the commons there, as well as Model T’s and big wheels riding around. The kids really dug it.

    Now I want to know how to get one of those vintage big wheels. Any suggestions?

  4. Gunner says:

    Hey Claude,

    Those bikes are hard to come by and big bucks. They still make them and there are “Wheelmen” bike clubs all over the US that do exhibitions and parades. I don’t own one but try http://www.thewheelmen.org/ as a good start.

    FYI – I have just started my research into our local professional “cage” team here in Westfield MA from 1902-1904. I hope to write a book on the team I will be keeping my eye on your site to learn more about the game during this time period. I may drop you an email from time to time with a question or two.

    Thanks

  5. Rick says:

    That was great really enjoy that. Are you aware of any Black Five basketball played in Seattle?

  6. Black Fives says:

    Rick, we just did a post about the Chocolate Coeds that did a West Coast tour which took them through British Columbia but other than that we don’t know of any … yet!

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