Dazzy Vance of the Brooklyn Dodgers (or Robins, as they were then called), pitched a no-hitter on September 13, 1925. The New York Times’ Richards Vidmer noted: “Reaching back behind him were seven more hitless innings left over from last Tuesday, when he held the same [Philadelphia] Phils to one lone hit.” Vance nearly pitched back-to-back no-hitters, the feat Johnny Vander Meer is known for, but the Phillies’ Chicken Hawks had “ruined an otherwise perfect game for Vance last week” with a second-inning hit. Vidmer added a bold prediction: “Almost as sure as daylight follows dawn he will some day turn in a perfect performance and take his place with those other immortals, Addie Joss, Cy Young, and Charlie Robertson, the only three in modern times who have accomplished the feat.”
The only thing I have to add to Vidmer’s account is that the discounting of pro baseball in the 1800s as pre-modern and not quite fully valid was already in place before the 20th century was even one-fourth of the way through. The perfect games by John Ward and John Richmond in June 1880 did not even warrant a mention by Vidmer.