TDBH: Bengals set to practice at Spinney Field

Posted Feb 13, 2018

This Day in Bengals History - February 14, 1968

Two weeks after coach and general manager Paul Brown finishes stocking the AFL expansion Bengals in the AFL-NFL common draft, his players get a practice field today when Cincinnati City Council enacts two ordinances that clear the way for the club to move into Spinney Field in the city’s Lower Price Hill neighborhood. The Bengals are taking over three baseball fields along the west side of Mill Creek and north of the Eighth Street Viaduct on Evans Street and remain 32 years until they donate it to the city when they move to a new downtown facility that also houses Paul Brown Stadium. The site becomes best known for the rather adventurous smells emanating from waste plants ringing the facilities depending on the direction of the winds. 

According to The Cincinnati Enquirer, one ordinance transfers control of Spinney from the Recreation Commission to the city manager so that $155,000 can be spent on developing a practice field and a “training,” building. The other ordinance, The Enquirer reports, authorizes the city to reach an agreement with the Bengals for use of the facility at rentals sufficient to amortize the city’s cost of development. When the Bengals donate it to Cincinnati at the turn of the century, it undergoes a couple of different assignments before becoming a complex for the Cincinnati Police Academy.

It’s been a whirlwind month for the Bengals as evidenced by a photo in The Sporting News taken a day after the draft. Seven key players in the planning of Riverfront Stadium are lined up for the ground-breaking ceremonies ready to detonate the first dynamite charge: Reds president Francis Dale, Hamilton County Commissioner Robert Wood, the Bengals’ Paul Brown, Warren Giles, president of baseball’s National League, Ohio governor James Rhodes, Cincinnati mayor Eugene Ruehlman and Cincinnati city manager William Wickman.



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