At the old website, I wrote that the "true significance of Duke's memoir...is that it gives historical context to the beginnings of the pioneer baseball era in St. Louis. The game came to St. Louis, was established in St. Louis and began to flourish in St. Louis as the Civil War was breaking out in the United States. One can not separate the origins of baseball in St. Louis from the history of the Civil War...Basil Duke was a member of the first baseball club in St. Louis history and a participant in the first games played in St. Louis using the New York rules. He's a significant figure in the history of St. Louis baseball and his memoirs, while not specifically mentioning the game, are a significant document."
I recommend that you take a look at Duke's memoirs because the man has a great story to tell and he paints a vivid picture of St. Louis at the very beginning of the Civil War.