Stories: Baseball and Civil Rights
#Shortstops: Playing for the 'Right' Reasons
Josh Barfield donated his bat to the Hall of Fame following the Civil Rights Game on March 31, 2007.
#Shortstops: Jones’ spikes celebrate Jackie’s legacy
On April 15, 2018, Orioles center fielder Adam Jones celebrated the 71st anniversary of Jackie Robinson breaking the color barrier with these specially designed spikes.
JFK’s letter to Jackie Robinson
Four months before winning the election that would make him the 35th President of the United States, John F. Kennedy sent a letter to Jackie Robinson.
#Shortstops: Bob Adelman’s Social Lens Lands on Baseball
Bob Adelman is best remembered as one of the most notable photographers of the Civil Rights Movement, but in 1973 his lens shifted towards baseball.
April 15, 1997: Jackie Robinson’s Number Retired
Robinson became the only player to have his number retired across Major League Baseball.
1970 game honored legacy of Martin Luther King Jr.
The East-West Major League Baseball Classic, featured more than a dozen future Hall of Famers.
Negro Leagues legends like Satchel Paige used humor to add to the show on the field.
Monte Irvin Remembers
While Monte Irvin excelled at the big league level, there’s always been the thought that fans during the 1950s didn’t get to see him at his best.
He Never Complained
Hall of Famer Roy Campanella’s courage in the face of racism and crippling injury served as inspiration.
#Shortstops: Art Pennington: An Equal among Greats
Art “Superman” Pennington was an equal among greats. But he preferred to play in Latin America, where he was judged by his talents instead of by the color of his skin.
African-American newspapers preserved Negro Leagues history
For decades, the history of the Negro Leagues was written in African-American newspapers.
Loveable Cub: Billy Williams parlayed a textbook swing and unwavering consistency into a plaque in Cooperstown
Billy Williams parlayed a textbook swing and unwavering consistency into a plaque in Cooperstown.
Doby made history with Indians
On July 3, 1947, the Newark Eagles agreed to sell the contract of Larry Doby to the American League's Cleveland Indians.
Doby's pioneering path earned Hall of Fame plaque
Larry Doby, the first African American player to appear in an AL game, was elected to the Hall of Fame on March 3, 1998.
Doby blazed trails on, off field
On June 30, 1978, Larry Doby became the second African-American to manage a big league team.
#Shortstops: School yearbooks paint early picture of Jackie Robinson
Baseball researchers can now get a glimpse of Robinson in his high school and collegiate glory days through a recent donation to the Baseball Hall of Fame Library.
When Robinson signed with Montreal, baseball and America changed forever
Jackie Robinson signed with the Dodgers' organization on Oct. 23, 1945.
Rachel Robinson Named Buck O’Neil Award Winner
Rachel Robinson has been selected as the fourth recipient of the Buck O'Neil Award
Frank Robinson blazed trail for managers
Frank Robinson became the first full-time African-American manager in big league history on April 8, 1975.
Frank Robinson’s legacy includes history on the field and in the dugout
Frank Robinson left his mark as a record-setting player and as the first African-American manager in big league history.
The Negro National League is Founded
On Feb. 13, 1920, the Negro National League was formed.
#Shortstops: Rube Foster’s home team
Letters from Rube Foster highlight one of the many challenges faced by Negro League teams.
Robinson debuts five days after signing with Dodgers
Jackie Robinson signed his first big league contract on April 10, 1947.
Jackie’s own words
Tape of September 1972 interview with Robinson donated to Museum.
Robinson’s Royal history
Before becoming baseball royalty, Jackie Robinson was a Kansas City Royal.
Henry Aaron hits home run No. 715
On April 8, 1974, Aaron’s fourth-inning home run gave him number 715.
The Negro leagues and baseball’s lost literature.
Carlos Paula, the man who integrated the Washington Senators
The Osvaldo Salas collection contains a rare image of Carlos Paula, a player whose story remains largely untold.
Sol White helped change the face of baseball
Though he was not permitted to excel on the diamond at the highest levels due to the color of his skin, Sol White’s position in history is secure.
The Talent and the Temper of Oliver Marcelle
Oliver Marcelle was an outstanding third baseman in the Negro Leagues. He was part of the legendary 1924 Leopardos de Santa Clara in the winter Cuban League, considered the greatest of all time.
Jackie Robinson, circa 1946
This footage is perhaps the earliest known recording – in color, no less – of Jackie Robinson playing for Montreal.
Mays-Newcombe barnstorming tour of 1955 set records, broke barriers
The Mays-Newcombe All-Stars could be the greatest team you've never heard of.
Emmett Ashford Blazed Trail for Umpire Diversity
Emmett Ashford was a pioneer for African Americans and eccentric umpires, alike.
Baseball History, American History and You
Often referred to as America's National Pastime, baseball has had a very active role in the shaping of this nation.
#Shortstops: Dark Town Battery
Dark Town Battery, a mechanical bank, brings to light the intersection of American culture, politics and race relations during the 19th century.
#Shortstops: Words on pictures tell fascinating Negro Leagues story
A note on the reverse side of a 1916 St. Louis Giants team photograph tells a fascinating Negro Leagues story.
#Shortstops: Breakfast of Negro Leagues Champions
In 1996, three Negro Leagues legends appeared on a Wheaties Box in celebration of Black History Month.
#CardCorner: 1969 Topps Donn Clendenon
Donn Clendenon appeared on not just one but two versions of cards in Topps 1969 series.
#CardCorner: 1969 Topps Leon Wagner
Leon Wagner's 1969 Topps card features the outfielder in a Reds uniform, a team for which he never played.
#CardCorner: 1968 Topps Ed Charles
Ed Charles remains a symbol of perseverance on the field and off.
#CardCorner: 1967 Topps Lee Maye
The multi-talented Lee Maye balanced careers as a professional singer and baseball player throughout his life.
#CardCorner: 1978 Topps Earl Williams
Earl Williams' 1978 Topps card was the last of his eight-year big league career.
#CardCorner: 1974 Topps Willie Stargell
The case of the stolen card.
#Shortstops: A Most Lonesome Game
Museum documents ‘zero attendance’ game in Baltimore.
The complete story of Jackie
Filmmaker Sarah Burns' new documentary seeks to tell a more complete story of Jackie Robinson's life.
Paige debuts with Indians at 42
On July 9, 1948, Satchel Paige pitched in his first big league game at the age of 42.
#CardCorner: 1969 Topps Tommy Harper
Tommy Harper's perseverance has led to success on and off the field.
#CardCorner: 1972 Topps Mudcat Grant
A 2004 visit from Mudcat Grant brought a 1972 baseball card to life.
Wendell Smith and Jackie Robinson
Wendell Smith became invaluable to the Dodgers organization during Jackie Robinson's transition to the major leagues.
2008 Buck O'Neil Award Winner Buck O'Neil
A Road to Equality
African-American barnstormers, led by Hall of Famer Satchel Paige, left a remarkable legacy
April 15 - Jackie Robinson Day
Fighting for Equality on the Baseball Grounds
Octavius Catto and the Pythians made inroads as the first prominent and successful African-American baseball club in Philadelphia.
Congress Introduces Integration of Baseball Commemorative Coin Act
Senators Scott and Booker, Congressmen Williams and Richmond Sponsor Legislation Authorizing United States Mint to Produce Coin Honoring the 75th Anniversary of the Integration of Major League Basebal
Brown’s lone big league homer made history
Willard Brown made history on Aug. 13, 1947 when he became the first Black ballplayer to homer in the major leagues.
National tragedy brought baseball to a halt for two days in 1968
Out of respect for Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., players on the Pittsburgh Pirates refused to play on the day of his funeral, and ultimately MLB delayed the season two days.
The Taylors, including Hall of Famer Ben Taylor, helped define a generation of baseball in the Negro Leagues
Ben Taylor was one of the most respected first basemen of his time.
Charley Pride was a star on the field and at the mic
Charley Pride's love of baseball and music brought him to Cooperstown.
Pre-Negro Leagues stars laid the foundation for integration
Before the birth of the Negro Leagues, pioneering Black players proved they belonged in pro baseball.
#Shortstops: History’s mysteries preserved in Big Bill Smith scrapbook
The scrapbook of William T. "Big Bill" Smith helps to tell the story of pre-Negro Leagues baseball in the early 20th century.
New PWCC cards in Shoebox Treasures highlight integration of baseball
PWCC Vault adds new cards to Museum's Shoebox Treasures exhibit.
Rube Foster’s writing predicted future of Black baseball
Rube Foster's vision made the Negro National League a reality in 1920.
Smith’s vision helped clear Jackie’s path to majors
Sportswriter and Spink Award winner Wendell Smith worked tirelessly to push for baseball's integration.
#Shortstops: Rachel’s legacy
Buck O'Neil Award winner Rachel Robinson advocated for Jackie Robinson's plaque to be changed to recognize his pioneering efforts to integrate Major League Baseball.
Bud Fowler’s life blazed a trail from Cooperstown
Bud Fowler blazed a trail for Black professional baseball players with a number of teams, including the Page Fence Giants.