Red Roses Scrapbooks, 1943-1952

Collection:   The Scrapbook Collection

Object ID:   MG-434, Boxes 101 and 102                                        

Title:  Red Roses Scrapbooks

Dates:   1943-1952

Extent:   4 volumes

Creator: Bell-Biemesderfer, Frances Marian (1908-2005), a.k.a. Bell, Frances Marian

Repository:  LancasterHistory (Organization)

Shelving Location: Archives South, Side 22

System of Arrangement:

Box 101, Red Roses Scrapbooks, Volume 1, Red Roses Baseball, 1943

Box 101, Red Roses Scrapbooks, Volume 2, Red Roses Baseball, 1945

Box 101, Red Roses Scrapbooks, Volume 3, Red Roses Baseball, 1952

Box 102, Red Roses Scrapbooks, Volume 4, Red Roses Basketball, 1946-1947

Condition of Scrapbooks: Condition of the scrapbooks is fragile. The edges of the all the pages are crumbling and the covers are cracked.

Scope and content:          

Frances Marian Bell created these scrapbooks to record her two favorite sports teams, the Lancaster Red Roses Baseball team and the Lancaster Red Roses Basketball team. The albums cover the baseball team for the years 1943, 1945 and 1952 and the basketball team for the 1946-1947 season.

Volumes 1, 2 and 3 are dedicated to the Lancaster Red Roses Baseball team. They all have leather covers and a string bound binding. Each album has hundreds of newspaper clippings regarding the team and their stats. Frances obviously took a lot of time filling these albums. Besides newspaper clippings, she wrote out her own commentaries, showing a detailed knowledge for the sport, the team, players and sports writers. Frances added her own commentaries and poems throughout the albums. The pages are decorated with stickers, cut outs and drawings, as well as baseball related cartoons. There are some original photographs of the baseball players in the albums and a few autographs. There are a few items randomly stuck in the albums, such as the Red Roses Yearbook for 1952 in Volume 1, and three 8×10 black and white photographs in volume 3. The first one is a team photograph of the1950 roster. The second photograph is of 5 players with another individual in a suit, two of them are in a Senators uniform and the other three are in a Red Roses uniform, none of the individuals are identified by name. There is also a color photo of Ted Williams with a newspaper image adhered to its verso in this volume. Although Frances includes clippings, photographs and commentaries about all the players, she specifically identifies Ernie Boushy, third baseman, by writing “He’s my boy!” next to his photo of in Volume 3. Volume 1 is 31 by 37 cm with 88 pages; Volume 2 is 26.5 by 32.5 cm with 86 pages; and Volume 3 is 31 by 37 cm and 79 pages.

The fourth volume is for the Lancaster Red Roses Basketball team for their first year, 1 December 1946 through 1 April 1947. As with the baseball albums, Frances had a keen understanding of the sport and the players. She hand wrote a number of columns written by an “Ama Toor,” entitled “Just my Pin-Onions.” There is a program from the Red Roses Baseball team, dated 1950, stuck in the middle of this volume. Many of the articles highlight the player Stanley “Whitey” Von Nieda, who seems to have been Frances’ favorite.

Conditions for Access:

Book 1: Please fill out a call slip for viewing

Book 2: Please fill out a call slip for viewing

Book 3: Please fill out a call slip for viewing

Book 4: Please fill out a call slip for viewing

Conditions Governing Reproductions: May not be photocopied. Please contact Research Staff or Archives Staff with questions.

Language: English

Source of Acquisition: Gift of Frances’ grandson, David Bell, December 2014.

Accruals: No further accruals are expected.

Preferred Citation:The Scrapbook Collection (MG-434), Box #, Volume #,


Lancaster County (Pa.) (LHo-LOC n 79056624)

Minor league baseball (LHo-LOC sh 90002254)

Scrapbooks (LHo-LOC n 86710275)

Administrative/Biographical History: Frances Marian Bell Biemesderfer (1908-2005), referred to as “Grandma Beans” on a note in Volume 2, lived in Lancaster with her husband, Wayne Theodore Bell, Sr. and two children, Wayne and Betty. Wayne Bell, Jr. is the father of David Bell who donated the collection. There is no clear connection with these sports teams and Frances other than she was just a fan. However, there are original photographs in her albums taken of the players posing for the camera so it would seem that Frances or someone she know had access to the players. Wayne and Frances divorced and she remarried Stanley Biemesderfer in 1960. She lived at 146 East Ross Street, Lancaster, until the early 1980’s. She died on March 5, 2005 at the age of 96 in Rolling Meadows, Illinois.1

The Lancaster Red Rose baseball team was originally known as the Lancaster Maroons. New uniforms (that were not Maroon) were designed for the 1906 season. A call went out to rename the team, however, nothing could be agreed upon. It was the press that came up with the Red Roses after the York White Roses’ manager predicted Lancaster’s defeat and declared that they would end up last in the league. The press dubbed the game between York and Lancaster “The War of the Roses.” Lancaster won the game and the name the Red Roses stuck. The Red Roses were part of numerous leagues throughout their history. For the times that are documented in this collection they were part of the Interstate State League (1943 and 1945) and the Piedmont League (1954).

The Eastern Professional Basketball League was formed in 1947 and was comprised of 6 teams from Pennsylvania and one from New York. It grew to add teams from across the country and was renamed the Continental Basketball Association. One of the main subjects in the basketball scrapbook is Stanley “Whitey” Von Nieda (1922-   ) who played the Lancaster Red Roses for one year (1946-1947). Von Neida played for Penn State University in college and went on to play professionally in the National Basketball Association for America for the Tri-City Blackhawks (1947-1948) and the Baltimore Bullets (1948-1949).2 He then returned to play for the Lancaster Red Roses for five years and later went on to coach at Elizabethtown for two years.3

[1] Lancaster Online. (March 8, 2005). Frances M. Bell-Biemesderfer Obituary. Retrieved from:

2National Basketball Legends: Retired Players Association. (2015). Retrieved from:

3 Fasnacht, A. (June 27, 2012). A local legend turns 90: Whitey’s journey to the NBA. Retrieved from:

Related Materials: (2015). Playing America’s game: 140 years of Lancaster baseball. Virtual Exhibit. Retrieved from:

Processing History: Processed and finding aid prepared by KB, December 2015. Finding aid was created following DACS conventions.