The baseball sculpture, “Splitter,” which stood in between Probate Court and Berkshire Superior Court in the city has been temporarily removed due to deterioration that threatened the stability and longevity of the sculpture.
City officials moved the steel sculpture to storage where its condition will be assessed. The plaque is still present.
The artwork, created by James D’Aniello, was initially presented during Art Of the Game, Pittsfield’s celebration of baseball in 2006, and was installed in front of the Berkshire Museum. It was sponsored by Legacy Banks Foundation, The Berkshire Eagle, and a host of sponsors.
The city later acquired the sculpture, and its placement by the courthouses reflects its proximity to the spot where local youth played baseball games. As the windows of the meeting house (where First Church of Christ now stands) were perceived to be endangered by occasional stray balls, a bylaw banned baseball within 80 yards of the location. The plaque commemorates Pittsfield’s baseball ordinance as the earliest mention of baseball being played in America.
For more information, please contact Roberta McCulloch-Dews at 413.499.9322.