Jake Wells

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Jake Wells(born August 9, 1863 in Memphis, Tennessee; died March 16, 1927 in Hendersonville, North Carolina) was a theater impresario and a former major league baseball player.

Wells owned, operated or managed public amusement properties throughout the Southeast, including vaudeville and legitimate theaters in Birmingham, Nashville, Knoxville, Memphis, Norfolk, Richmond and other Southern cities.

In 1908, he was manager of Lake View Park and the Electric Park Casino. His most prominent project was the Lyric Theatre, which he built in partnership with Louis Clark in 1913.. Wells purchased the Birmingham Auditorium in 1898 and renamed the venue the Bijou Theatre. He also owned the Orpheum Theatre, another vaudeville theatre on Third Avenue North across the street from the Bijou.

Wells was a catcher for the Detroit Wolverines (1888) and the St. Louis Browns (1890). Overall, he spent 46 games in the majors, hitting .210 in 162 at-bats. He had 22 runs, 14 RBI and OPS of .511. In the field, he committed 24 errors in 44 games, for a .932 fielding percentage

He is buried in St. Mary's Catholic Cemetery in Norfolk, Viriginia.


  • Julius Cahn's Official Theatrical Guide, Vol. 12, 1908

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