As baseball's popularity soared at the turn of the century, owners of
major league teams began looking to build larger stadia for their
classic ballparks started with Shibe Park in Philadelphia in 1909.
At the time, building a huge, 20,000 seat, concrete and steel ballpark
was seen as a daring act of faith, but the success of the Athletics and
Phillies there ushered in a brand new era in ballpark construction.
Wooden firetraps were torn down, and between 1909 and 1923 15 new
concrete-and-steel ballparks were erected. Philadelphia, St.
Louis, Brooklyn, the Bronx, Boston and Chicago - all added new parks,
and no two were alike. They were shaped by the confining street
blocks on which they were located, and the odd shapes and unique
characteristics gave them a character that escaped the cookie-cutter
stadiums of the 1970s and 1980s.
Attending a game at one of these classic ballparks is an experience that
passes down from generation to generation. Today, just three of
these heirlooms are left - Fenway Park, Yankee
Stadium and Wrigley Field.