Over the summer, my parents moved from Brooklyn, where I grew up, to Greensboro, North Carolina. And in August, I took some time to go visit them and get to know their new home.
My mother moved to Greensboro for a new job. My father moved for Minor League baseball and his new team is the Greensboro Grasshoppers. My father is an intense baseball fan. While he has his favorite teams, he is truly just a fan of the game. And there is nothing he loves more than Minor League baseball. Though I’ve never explicitly asked him, I think it has something to do with the purity of the game. No fame or fortune, the game is stripped down to its most genuine form. It’s just baseball. So when I went to North Carolina to visit my parents, we went to a game.
Greensboro, North Carolina was the location of the Battle at Guilford Courthouse in March of 1781. An army of 4,500 American militia, lead by Major General Nathaniel Greene, was tactically defeated by the smaller British forces of about 1,900 soldiers, lead by Lord Charles Cornwallis. While they won the battle, the British suffered heavy loses–nearly 25% of their troops! Cornwallis decided to change course. Rather than focus on the Carolinas, Cornwallis decided to focus on Virginia. Seven months later, Lord Cornwallis would surrender at Yorktown. The Battle at Guilford Courthouse is considered to be Cornwallis’ last stand.
The Greensboro Grasshopper’s stadium–and all of Greensboro for that matter–is loaded with references to this historical event. The refreshment stand at the edge of the stadium, or the “last” stand, is called Cornwallis’ Last Stand!