The First Wrigley Field
In 1916 William Wrigley bought a share of Chicago's National League, and over the next five years steadily increased his stake. In 1921 as the team set up the field and clubhouse in Avalon Canyon, although never officially named, Avalon townspeople began calling the field Wrigley Field. During this time, the Cubs home field, back in Chicago, was known as Weeghman Park. The Cubs trained in Avalon from 1921 to 1951, with the exception of the war years of 1942-1945. Relocating the Cubs spring training to Catalina Island brought national attention to this vacation paradise which Wrigley purchased in 1919.
In 1925, when Mr. Wrigley was the owner of the Los Angeles Angels, he had another field built in Los Angeles . That ballpark was named Wrigley Field and no longer exists. In the meantime, Weeghman Park in Chicago was re-named “Cubs Park.” Not until 1926 did the Chicago ballpark become Wrigley Field. This makes Avalon the first site of a Wrigley Field.
Nineteen Hall of Fame players trained with the Cubs on Catalina Island, including such legends as Grover Cleveland Alexander, Dizzy Dean, Roger Hornsby, Joe McCarthy and Hack Wilson.