The origins of the Eagle Club are rife with contradictions. Although 1854 is the generally accepted date, there are some suggestions that the club may actually have been formed earlier and even hints that it may have preceded the Knickerbocker and Gotham clubs. The most noteworthy piece of evidence is a small book entitled By-laws and Rules of the Eagle Ball Club, which was published in 1852 with a cover that states plainly, 'organized, 1840.' In addition, an 1887 history of the club stated, 'A few months after the rise of the Knickerbockers the members of Eagle Hose Cart No. 1 called a meeting and organized a base ball club.' Finally in 1871, the Eagle Club made plans to celebrate its eighteenth anniversary on August 25, which suggests that the club was founded in the summer of 1853.