THE NEW ORDER
WITH THE RISE OF SPORTS SUPPLEMENTING THE CONTINUED growth of commercial amusements, there was a steadily broadening interest in recreation in the 1880's and 1890's. The doldrums of half a century earlier had been left far behind. The gospel of work still held good, but it was tempered by a new realization of the need for play. The decline of puritan influence resulted in wider popular sanction for many diversions which had once been generally disapproved. And the new sports themselves, as a writer in Outing declared, had made a breach in the walls "which that awful personage Mrs. Grundy had raised up to separate the sexes in outdoor games."1 The era of Victorian repression was drawing to a close.
Newspapers and magazines all reflected this. During the summer of 1886 the New York Tribune devoted no less than five hundred columns to sports, also issuing its Book of Open-Air Sports, and a decade later William Randolph Hearst started a custom which the entire press quickly adopted. He began publishing daily in the New York Journal a page headed "In the World of Professional and Amateur Sports."2 Magazines devoted to these new activities were also started. Outing had shown the way. It was followed by a wide choice of weeklies and monthlies ranging from the American Canoeist to the Bicycling World, from the Ball Players' Chronicle to Archery and Tennis News.
It could still be said that many more people watched sports than took part in them. James F. Muirhead, a sympathetic but critical English observer of the new movement, reported that games were widely played in the East but in the Middle West