On November 8, 1894 — King Kelly, probably the most popular baseball player of the 19th century, dies of pneumonia in Boston, MA. Like his hard-living teammates, Ned Williamson and Silver Flint, of the 1886 championship Chicago White Stockings, Kelly dies at age 36.
When Kelly took Ill his health was front-page news in the Boston papers. Kelly’s unexpected death was front-page news in every National League city. Agnes arrived on Friday afternoon and arranged to bury him in Boston, the city that loved him at the Mount Hope Cemetery. By some estimates, 7,000 people attended Kelly’s funeral on Sunday, November 11. His song, “Slide, Kelly, Slide,” was recorded by several artists on records, and remained a popular American tune into the 1920s. In 1945 he was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame.
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