The New York Times of December 19, 1854, wrote this about the status of baseball in New York City:
There are now in this City three regularly organized Clubs, who meet twice in each week for about eight months in the year, for exercise in the good, old-fashioned American game of Base-Ball. They are known to us as the Knickerbocker, Eagle and Gotham Base-Ball Clubs. The “Knickerbockers” and “Eagles” play at the Elysian Fields, Hoboken, and the “Gothamites” at the Red House, Harlem. These Clubs are composed of residents of the City, of various professions, each numbering about thirty members, and their affairs are conducted in such a manner as to enable all persons who can give the necessary time for the purpose, to enjoy all the advantages of the game. There have been a large number of spirited trials of skill during the last season, which have shewn that the game has been thoroughly systematized, and that the players have attained to great skill and activity. The season for play closed about the middle of November, and on Friday evening the three Clubs partook of their annual dinner at Fijux’s [Charles Knickerbocker Fijux, a club member], in Barclay-street. About forty-five members were present, and enjoyed themselves in a manner that indicated that ball-playing does not seriously diminish the appetite for either physical or intellectual enjoyment.