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Old October 23rd, 2015, 08:55 PM   #11

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A side note to this fine thread: There was a Christian group that fielded professional baseball teams (not major league) that travelled around playing exhibition games with local teams. They were the House of David, and they often played against Negro League teams, sometimes travelling with them. As the linked source says--

Quote:
The House of David traveling teams were known to align themselves with another group considered outcasts by many people in America. They frequently invited Negro League squads to travel with them from town to town.

It was the House of David’s version of breaking the color barrier.

“The House of David team would travel in one bus, and a Negro League team, maybe the Kansas City Monarchs with Satchel Paige, would be in a second bus,” Siriano said. “The Negro League team would then wait outside of town until they heard it was OK.

“Members of the House of David would tell the promoters that not only was their town team going to play the Negro League team at 11 and we’ll play you at 4, but after the games, they’re going to eat in the restaurant with us and then stay in the same hotel as us.”

Siriano said that deal backed many promoters into a corner. After all, there might be 10,000 people at a ballpark anxious to see the House of David squad play.

“The organizers knew that they’d have a riot on their hands if they said no to those conditions and turned the House of David team away,” he said.
Click the image to open in full size.

The House of David teams were known for their long hair and beards, as well as a "pepper" routine they did, a few seconds of which can be seen in the video below.



[ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WfGZt-d8NC8[/ame]
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Old October 24th, 2015, 06:13 AM   #12
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Black player Moses Fleetwood Walker played Major League baseball in the 1880s long before Jackie Robinson.
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Old October 24th, 2015, 07:51 AM   #13
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As I mentioned above, Satchel Paige actually pitched briefly for the House of David team. I'm sure that there's some truth to the House of David integrating baseball in certain towns, but overall I think the linked article probably engages in some hyperbole about their role. The main income of Negro League teams consisted of barnstorming against local teams, and usually white teams. They had regular circuits and booking agents who arranged their schedules, and the games were highly anticipated and promoted.

Nice video of the pepper game!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike McClure View Post
Black player Moses Fleetwood Walker played Major League baseball in the 1880s long before Jackie Robinson.
The story of Walker and the other black players in organized baseball before 1900 is told in the "Out at Home" article mentioned in the first post in this thread.
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Old October 24th, 2015, 08:06 AM   #14

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Iowa had a very rich tradition of black baseball in the very early 20th century. The famously integrated mining town of Buxton (near present day Albia, IA) had a great team, the Buxton Wonders, who toured around or played other teams (black or white) that barnstormed in their area.

In Des Moines, a former pitcher and ballplayer J.L. Wilkinson, started up his own barnstorming team nicknamed the All Nations Team which featured the nearly unhittable pitcher John Wesley Donaldson. The All Nations team was made up of ballplayers of different ethnic backgrounds, with some possibly exaggerated to add more "flavor." Later, when the Negro Leagues were getting established, Wilkinson moved his team to Kansas City and they became the famous KC Monarchs of Satchel Paige fame.

Wilkinson had also created a team of girls that barnstormed playing baseball before his Monarchs days. J.L. Wilkinson is enshrined in both the Negro Leagues Hall of Fame in Kansas City, MO (well worth the visit, as it also is in the same building with the Jazz Museum, and tickets for both only cost me something like $14) and the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, NY.
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Old October 24th, 2015, 10:24 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zhang LaoYong View Post
Iowa had a very rich tradition of black baseball in the very early 20th century.
Yes. Fleetwood Walker and a few other players are better known because they played in the American Association that retroactively got dubbed a "major league," but in the 1890's it does seem like the few black players left in organized baseball were concentrated in smaller leagues stretching from Indiana to Kansas and Nebraska.
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Old October 24th, 2015, 08:21 PM   #16

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Here are a couple to titles that I enjoyed

African American pioneers of baseball: a biographical encyclopedia
By Lew Freedman
Greenwood Press

Out of the Shadows
African American Baseball from the Cuban Giants to Jackie Robinson
Edited by Bill Kirwin
University of Nebraska Press
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Old December 6th, 2016, 06:53 AM   #17
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For analytically-minded people, this website has a significant advance in Negro League statistics:

Seamheads Negro Leagues Database
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Old December 6th, 2016, 07:05 AM   #18

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Any poll is worthless without the inclusion of Elston Howard. I reject any poll that does not include the greatest Yankee catcher.
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Old December 7th, 2016, 07:15 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wenge View Post
Any poll is worthless without the inclusion of Elston Howard. I reject any poll that does not include the greatest Yankee catcher.
Wenge: When the Pittsburgh Courier poll came out Howard was 23 and in the Army. It would have taken quite a poll to identify Howard as a Yankee great at that point.
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Old April 20th, 2017, 09:55 AM   #20
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Upcoming premier of a new opera about the life of Josh Gibson:

https://www.operanews.com/Opera_News..._Diamonds.html
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