Philadelphia has lost not only a legendary baseball player, but a tremendous person. Harold Gould, an outstanding pitcher for the Philadelphia Stars in the Negro Leagues, passed away on Friday, Nov. 9 at the New Jersey Veterans Memorial Home in Vineland, N.J. Gould, a Millville native, was 88 years old.
Gould was born in Gouldtown, N.J. He was the son of the late Sydney and Eva (nee Lloyd) Gould and the husband of Gwendolyn McElroy Foote Gould.
Gould had been a resident of the Carmel area for the past 65 years. He had grown up and attended the original Gouldtown three room school, which had three grades in each class. He graduated from Bridgetown High School in 1943, and pursued his education at Morgan State College and Glassboro State College (now Rowan) where he graduated in 1947.
In 1950, he entered the United States Army and was honorably discharged in 1952 during the Korean War. Gould’s passion was always baseball. He played for the Stars from 1946 to 1948. The Stars played their games at 44th and Parkside Avenue. The team played in front of some huge crowds. Gould played with Stanley Glenn, Bill Cash, Wilmer Harris and Mahlon Duckett. In addition to playing for the Stars, he played for the Dodgers in the Canada Professional Leagues.
In 1994, Gould was inducted into the New Jersey Hall of Fame and the South Jersey Hall of Fame in 2001. He was named one of Cumberland County’s “People of the Century” in 1999, and was named to the county’s Black Hall of Fame in 2009. He was honored regularly by the Phillies each year on April 15 (Jackie Robinson Day) along with other members of the Stars. He had a chance to meet Jimmy Rollins and Ryan Howard on several occasions.
In 1970, he became the first Black pipe fitter/welder in Local 322, where he worked until his retirement in 1998. For many years, he ran Harold’s Welding and taught industrial arts for the Bridgeton Board of Education and Leesburg State Prison System, where he served as director of the prison industrial arts program. He was very proud of his Gouldtown roots. He had an oral narrative written and published in 2009 by Dr. Bob Allen entitled “He Came From Gouldtown.”
On Friday, Nov. 16, there will be a wreath placed at the Philadelphia Stars Memorial Park, near Belmont and Parkside Avenues. The ceremony will begin at 10 a.m. David Montgomery, Philadelphia Phillies president, is expected to attend.
After that, there will be a viewing on Friday from 4 to 7 p.m. at the Sray-Webster Funeral Home, 62 Landis Avenue at Carl’s Corner in Upper Deerfield Township. On Saturday, Nov. 17, there will be a viewing from 8 to 10 a.m. prior to the services at the church. Funeral services will take place at 10 a.m. from Union Baptist Temple Church, 30 Martin Luther King Jr. Way. The interment will take place in Gouldtown Memorial Park in Fairfield Township.
Gould is survived by his wife of 61 years, Gwendolyn, his three children Valerie A. Gould, Harold Gould Jr., both of Millville, and Lorena E. Gould of Bridgeton, one brother Herbert Gould of Atlantic City and five grandchildren.