Thursday, November 10, 2022

Giving a name, or at least some initials, to Quisenberry

Dr., or "Doc", E.G. Quisenberry, was a recent graduate from North Pacific Dental College, when the Beavers decided to give him a tryout during the 1921 season.

Having only been able to find a set of initials for the good doctor, and no obituary, my research has been somewhat limited, but even so, I have been able to expand on what little information is currently available from the usual starting points (i.e. Baseball Reference and Stats Crew).

The biggest obstacle one has to overcome when trying to research the Beavers Quisenberry, is the fact that there were two Quisenberry's operating in and around Western Oregon at the exact same time. From what I can gather, both were similar in age, both worked in medicine, both were sometimes referred to as "Doc", both had some association with baseball, both used initials in place of a first name, and both appeared in many newspaper articles throughout their respective lives. The possibilities for confusion are endless, and even more so when an article about one of them only refers to it's subject as "Quisenberry" or "Doc Quisenberry".

In an attempt to help any future researchers, there was Perry Dwight ( or P.D.) Quisenberry, a pharmacist, who owned and operated a well-known pharmacy in Salem for many years. There isn't very much information available, but I have been able to deduce that he played some semi-pro ball in Eugene for a time during the 20's. He passed in 1959.

Then there's our Quisenberry, E.G. Quisenberry. Dentist/ballplayer. 

Morning Oregonian 7/7/21
Following 1920's losing season, the teams fifth in a row, Beavers management attempted to reverse their fortunes for the following year by injecting some life into the team via a number of youthful, and mostly unproven, prospects. Unfortunately, it didn't work, as the team would end up going 51-134 during that 1921 season; which was an all-time low in wins for the franchise. Reading old recaps, one can see that it isn't fair to pin all of the blame for that historically bad season on the youngsters, but they certainly shouldered some of it.

One of those new recruits, Doc Quisenberry, appears to have only pitched for his dental school team prior to joining the Beavers, and as the above article, and records show, he didn't fair so well during his one year with the team. That was his one and only season in the minors too, as he never made it past semi-pro ball after that.

Trying to trace Doc's career post-Beavers is very difficult. He opened a dental office in Portland sometime after 1921, and then closed it before decades end. He played on the Albany semi-pro team during 1925 and '27, as as a pitcher and an outfielder. By the mid 40's he was coaching softball in Corvallis, while still practicing dentistry. He seems to have been an avid golfer as well, participating in many tournaments throughout his life. The last mention of him in the newspapers comes from 1968, where he was the guest speaker for an annual Pioneer Party that was held by the Corvallis Woman's Club and the Benton County Historical Society. Curiously, that article also mentions that he had worked in the U.S. Treasury Department under Woodrow Wilson. President Wilson's second term ended in 1921, so that means that Doc may have worked there before going to dental school, which would make him a little bit older at the time of his joining the Beavers than the 22 or 23 that I thought he might've been as a recent college grad. 

Needless to say, there are many gaps in Doc's timeline. I plan to revisit this research from time to time, and will update this post if anything else comes to light. In the meantime, at least we now have some initials to go with the last name on my all-time list (which can be found at the top of the blog).


  1. Do you know where Quisenberry went to college? Maybe in DC? Or maybe more likely, he was in an Oregon-based Treasury office, where it's quite possible that employing college students was a common practice.

    1. I couldn't find anything other than the dental school, which was in Portland.

  2. Great research. Hope you're eventually able to fill in some of those gaps. For decades... the only Quisenberry I heard of was the popular Royals reliever. Then I met another one working in HR at the district that employs me. Now Doc? Guess it's not that uncommon of a name.

    1. I don't know if it was great, but it's the best I could do for now. And yeah, Doc was a pretty common nickname back then. Probably much less so these days.