The Empire Conference is made up of clubs from northern New Jersey, New York City, New York State, Connecticut and Rhode Island. The modern game of baseball has its roots in the “New York Game”. The Elysian Fields in Hoboken is thought to be the first place where the game we know as baseball was played. In 1845, the Knickerbocker Base Ball Club of New York, the first true base ball clubs started playing at the Elysian Fields because of a lack of field space in Manhattan. On June 19, 1846, the Knickerbockers led by Alexander Cartwright played the New York Nine on these grounds in the first organized game between two clubs. By the 1850’s, several Manhattan-based member clubs of the National Association of Base Ball Players were using the grounds as their home field.
It is fitting that some of the oldest and most established vintage base ball clubs hail from this area. The New York Mutuals lay claim to being the oldest vintage base ball club in America tracing itself back to 1980. The Brooklyn Atlantics are also one of the game’s great clubs that has been around since the 1990s. The Flemington Neshanock and Brooklyn Eckfords have a long history of showing the game all across the east as do the New York Mutuals. The Providence Grays are one of the finest clubs not only in New England, but all of America. The Hoboken Nine represent Northern New Jersey and New York City well. New Brunswick and Monmouth Furnace are fine new additions to the MAVBBL and can be found playing in Central New Jersey.