Charlie Argue was the early driving force for several decades behind the still operating Border Baseball League. He served as president from 1930-60. Before, during, and after his long-time service as president, he was also involved as a coach, manager, team organizer, and even groundskeeper when necessary. For example, he coached and managed his hometown Marther Mudhens team for 20 years. Charlie also worked tirelessly for the young people and for the game of baseball in the communities of the RM of Roblin where he served as Reeve for 25 years. Although such long-term dedication doesn’t show up in any traditional baseball statistics Charlie deserves to be remembered and celebrated as a worthy Manitoba Baseball Hall of Fame member.
“Chairman, honored inductees, other honored guests, ladies and gentleman, it is my honor and privilege to act as the presenter on behalf of the board of directors for the induction of Mr. Charles Argue. Charlie Argue was born in 1904 in the Clearwater Area, about an hour west of here, and in 1928 moved a little further west to the community of Mather, where he spent the rest of his life. Records indicate that baseball was being played and teams were being formed as early as 1908, however, when Charlie arrived in 1928 there was no ball being played in Mather. We really dont know an awful lot about Charlie as a player, except that as a boy and at a young man he played and fell in love with the game. But we do know that most of his life he worked tirelessly and did everything and anything associated with baseball. He also worked on the premise that any kid and every kid that wanted to play the game, should get a chance to play. In the spring of 1930 a meeting was held in a train station in Mather the result was the formation of the South Central Boarder Baseball League. Comprised of four teams including Mather, somewhere along the line the South Central part of the name was dropped, and I think as long as I can remember it has been known simply as the Boarder Baseball League. The league in some form has upgraded every year since with possibly the exception of the war years. In 1960 Charlie Argue was presented with a plaque by the league in recognition of his thirty years of dedicative service as president of the league, thirty consecutive years. Let your minds wander back and imagine the depth of the passion and commitment of Charlies and many others like him. Can you imagine all the time that must have been spent, nurturing the game and the league. The trials of tribulation of the dirty thirties, and the war years, and then into the gory years of baseball in Manitoba, during all years which he was the driving force, now I would like to tell you a couple of little stories about the man, he coached and managed teams of kids of all ages, if for some reason the kid didnt have a ride one he would just let him know and he could come and get them, and he must have done it dozens of times, just to be sure the kids would get their chance to play. There was a young guy who had a vision problem who really wanted to play ball. Charlie made it possible. He coached him he helped him encouraged him and he became a pretty good ball play, who still has a love for the game. The guy who is now a proud grandfather, and he may say to this day because of him poor vision no other folk would have ever let him play with out Charlie. Another boy wants to play ball, time are tough and he doesn’t have a glove and he is left handed, only one on the team, the other boys shared their gloves with him so he played his first season with a borrowed glove worn on the wrong hand, that year at a school Christmas concert there was a parcel under the tree from Santa, addressed to this young man inside was a glove for the right hand, we know this happened the same way on at least one other occasion, no one knows for sure but everyone that knows the story believes that Santa had the middle name of Charlie. After about 40 years of involvement Charlie decided it was time to take a step back, so the team purchased a gold watch, they tried to present him with this watch but he basically told them, that in good conscious he could not accept it because he contributed what he could with the expectation of no reward, and just for the love of the game, sometime later Charlie suffered a stroke, for several years he went to almost all home games and sat on the bench, kept the score, kept the stats and did everything else he was able to do, Charlie spent most of his life actively involved in baseball it seems only fair that tonight we recognize the founding father of the boarder league, a president for that league for over thirty years and an active participant for another 20+ years. He and others like him, gave so much to creating a sold foundation for hundreds of kids, all along this board to learn to play and to have places to play.He obviously had a passion and a love for the game, and deserves to be remembered and celebrated for his immense contribution to our area, the province as a whole and to the game. If Charlie were alive he probably wouldn’t be here tonight to accept this honor kind of like the gold watch story, however, we have a number of his family here tonight, including his daughter, son and grandchildren and great grandchildren, I am joined on the stage tonight with his daughter, grandson, and great grandson. Now it is my honor on behalf of all of those who knew him and appreciated all he did for the game, please welcome the family and recognize our newest inductee into the Manitoba Baseball Hall of Fame. Mr. Charles Argue.”
Charlie Argue 1966 Newspaper Article
Charlie Argue, 1955 South West Border League All Star Game Newspaper Article
These articles are gathered from University of Manitoba Archives & Special Collections, Winnipeg Tribune Collection