The gay Philadelphians, crowned with the laurels of two victories in St. Louis, left last Sunday evening for Bloomington, Illinois, to play the Bloomington Club. Chicago will feel next the weight of their prowess; then Detroit must gird up her loins; and after that Cleveland will receive the conquerors.
On the 4th of July, at Alton, Illinois, the Bluff City Club, the champions of that city, and the Athletics, of St. Louis, will play a match game.
The Junior Empire Club and the Resolute Club, of this city, met on the 13th in an exciting match, and the Empires won by a score of 47 to 13.
The Unions have called a special meeting of their club this evening at 8 o'clock, to transact important business looking to the great contest they are to have with the Empires on next Thursday. This match promises to be very exciting. There is much determination exhibited on both sides to win, and a settled purpose to do all that can be done on either side to settle the question of local supremacy.
The Athletics, bidding farewell to their defeated comrades in St. Louis, expressed themselves greatly pleased at their treatment and at the generous hospitality extended to them, and left a standing invitation for the two clubs to visit Philadelphia.
-Missouri Republican, June 16, 1868
The most interesting thing here is the reference to the Bluff City Club of Alton, which is the first reference to this club that I've ever seen. The only other club that I know of in Alton in 1868 was the Shurtleff College club, although it's possible that the Actives of Alton, who were playing as early as 1866, were still active that season. The reference to Bluff City being the "champions" of Alton implies that there were other clubs playing in the city that season.