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Over seventy years ago, in 1947, Jackie Robinson became the first African American athlete to play in the World Series, having famously broken the color barrier in Major League Baseball earlier in the year. In another breakthrough, Leopoldo “Polín” Martinez, a Mexican American ballplayer, played in a world series that year as well—just not the one that Jackie Robinson played in.

Instead of playing in the Major League World Series, Martinez played in the IX Serie Mundial de Beisbol Amateur—the Ninth Amateur World Series, an event dominated by Latin American ballplayers. Martinez’s life and achievements show the long tradition of Latinos and baseball.

Jackie Robinson cleared the path for baseball greats like Minnie Miñoso, from Cuba, and Roberto Clemente, from Puerto Rico, two of the first Latino Major League superstars, who came to prominence in the 1950s.
Leopoldo “Polín” Martinez was known for his eager and hardworking attitude, as well as his trademark smile.

Leopoldo Martinez was born in Mexico in 1920 and was an avid baseball lover throughout his life. As any fan might, he idolized the Major League greats of his day, such as Lou Gehrig and Babe Ruth. Years later, he told his children of how he saw Gehrig and Ruth hold batting practice during an off-season travel-team game in Mexico.

Martinez included Gehrig and a few other Major League stars in his homemade scrapbooks. Alongside these stars, Martinez included another important, though not as well-known, baseball player: himself. He was playing amateur baseball by the age of 17, playing in the Mexican state of Chihuahua just across the border from Texas. Martinez was known for his fielding, dedication, and trademark smile. In his scrapbook, he carefully recorded his career, from his 1939 season, where he batted a mere .176—recording the season stats by hand—to his two consecutive appearances in the Amateur World Series.

Martinez (on the left, not the right as marked) traveled to El Paso, Texas, to attend spring training with the El Paso Texans. Paul Dean (middle), brother of famed Cardinals pitcher “Dizzy” Dean, managed the team.
New York Yankees pitcher Vernon “Lefty” Gomez, who played from 1930 to 1943, makes an appearance in one of Martinez’s scrapbooks.
This pamphlet from the Amateur World Series includes highlights on players, brief histories of the Amateur World Series, and, as with most baseball programs, sponsored advertisements. The Amateur World Series had advertisements of its own, two of which Martinez collected in one of his scrapbooks.
The roster of the Mexican National team in one of the Serie Mundial de Beisbol Amateur pamphlets. Martinez is in the far-left, bottom row.

The IX Serie Mundial de Beisbol Amateur took place in Cartagena, Colombia, from November 29 through December 20, 1947. The Amateur World Series was the equivalent of today’s World Baseball Classic, in which different countries fielded national baseball teams to compete. It began in 1938 and first took place in Great Britain. In its first year, only Great Britain and the United States participated. While the Amateur World Series never gained a substantial audience in Europe, it became an instant hit amongst fans and players throughout Latin America. Latin American countries eagerly embraced the series. In its second year the series moved to Cuba, where it remained for four more years.

By 1947 nine national teams played, every single one of which was from Latin America. While 1947 marked a new era for baseball in the United States, Latino inclusion in the majors on a broader scale was slow. According to Mark L. Armour and Daniel R. Levitt’s article, “Baseball Demographics, 1947–2016” for the Society for American Baseball Research, it was not until 1967 that Latinos started to make up more than 10% of Major League Baseball players. By 1991 that number was 15%—greater than the percentage of Latina/os in the United States, which in 1990 was only 9%. Before greater inclusion, Latina/os found alternative ways to play the sport they loved, usually at the local and semiprofessional levels. The Amateur World Series was just one of the grander stages for Latina/o baseball at this time.

By 1947 Martinez had gone a long way since the 1939 season—always having been a great fielder, he eventually became one of Mexico’s great hitters as well. Though he never played professionally, he played the game he loved throughout the Americas. One can easily imagine the excitement in the air at the Amateur World Series, from the many photographs of parading teams and the autographs he collected from players of his own and different teams in his 1948 program. He cherished these experiences, kept clippings of the games, archived photographs of his time in personal scrapbooks, and treasured the Amateur World Series programs—all of which are currently preserved in the national collection at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History.

After a weak start in Europe, the Amateur World Series was quickly adopted by Latin American countries. Here, the Mexican National Team poses in the stadium. Martinez played with the Mexican National Team for two years before becoming a U.S. citizen. He is in the back row, third from the right.
Despite no press recording his fame in the annals of baseball history, Martinez kept his own record of his baseball career, creating scrapbooks of his time playing in Mexico. Here are clippings of him and the rest of the Mexican National Team.

Luke Perez is from Los Angeles, California. A former intern on the museum’s Latinos and Baseball Project, he is now a museum specialist in the Division of Political History.  He has blogged about Leopoldo Martinez’s scrapbooks and his family’s dedication to playing baseball.

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Posted Date: 
Tuesday, December 11, 2018 - 09:15
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Wielding an adorably tiny vacuum, objects conservator Dawn Wallace peered through her stereomicroscope at thousands of 80-year-old red sequins. As the soundtrack to The Wizard of Oz drifted through the Conservation Lab, Wallace gently began vacuuming every single delicate sequin, carefully removing surface dirt with a soft brush and a pipette attached to a vacuum cleaner. In a process that took over 200 hours, Wallace examined, cleaned, and stabilized Dorothy's Ruby Slippers from the 1939 movie, preparing them to go back on display in their own special gallery. As the Ruby Slippers step back into the spotlight, here are five things to know about their journey through the Conservation Lab.

1. They're the same old shoes—we promiseOur Ruby Slippers before visiting the Conservation Lab (top) and after (bottom). 

With their renewed shimmer, we can't blame you for thinking Wallace artificially enhanced the look of the shoes worn by Judy Garland on the Yellow Brick Road. While they do shine a little brighter now, we assure you that they're the same pair. Wallace didn't add new sequins, touch-up the pair with paint, or replace missing beads—"improvements" or restoration were not used on this project.

"The shoes are 80 years old, and we want to retain the history of their use," Wallace said. "Missing sequins or broken beads could be from the filming." Erasing that evidence was out of the question, but removing surface grime was an important part of her work.

In this photo taken through a Conservation Lab microscope, it's possible to see where the color coating on the sequins is in less-than-mint condition. These shoes worked hard—Garland likely wore them in dance scenes, the felt on the bottom muffling the noise of her steps—and that's history we're proud to preserve.2. A little cleaning goes a long way

Cleaning the glass beads on the bows created a particularly dramatic before-and-after difference, revealing glistening, shiny red glass beads where there had been a hazy burgundy color before.

In this photo taken during treatment, the left section of this bow from the Ruby Slippers has not been cleaned. The right side has.3. We're not losing a single sequin

After cleaning, Wallace took an even closer look at how each sequin is attached to the fabric covering the shoe, checking 80-year-old thread for any sign of weakness. Where she discovered weak thread, she reinforced it with an appropriate adhesive or fine hair silk that provides stability. You'll only be able to spot these stabilizers in very close-up photographs.

Without a very close look, you might miss Wallace's handiwork. This sequin's thread showed signs of weakness, so she secured it with a silk thread to provide stability that will allow the shoes to be on display for years to come.

While you may never appreciate the thread in the Ruby Slippers, Wallace said that examining it was one of her favorite parts. "That's where you see the really human touch," she said. Multiple pairs of Ruby Slippers were made for The Wizard of Oz, and different costumers might have subtle differences in their work and sewing skills.

Wallace examines the sequins of the Ruby Slippers.4. Sequins, get in formation

Looking even closer, Wallace discovered that each sequin has multiple layers. A reflective silver layer under the top coating gives the red its special reflectance—but over the years, some sequins had flipped the other direction or rotated out of the original position. Using tweezers covered with Teflon to protect the delicate, scratch-prone surface, Wallace gently realigned individual sequins when possible and necessary, revealing their reflective side.

This gentle realignment of certain sequins also helped the Ruby Slippers regain their sleek appearance. The shoes were commercial Innes heels purchased by costumers and covered with red fabric onto which they'd sewed red sequins in bias rows, creating a sleek appearance in which all of the sequins lightly overlap and lay smoothly. Realignment allowed many sequins to regain their rightful position in relation to their neighbors. If a sequin were sewed on too tightly to realign or the process might endanger a sequin or thread in any way, Wallace left it alone.

Examining the shoes to better understand their construction was an important step for Wallace.5. Cleaning all those tiny sequins wasn't the hardest part

Handling the shoes without touching the sequins was a huge challenge, Wallace reports. Spending hundreds of hours working on objects you can only manipulate in certain ways presents challenges, but Wallace quickly learned how to safely handle the shoes. She also created special mounts to support the shoes during treatment.

For Halloween, Wallace decorated her own pair of shoes with sleek rows of sequins, just for fun.

After spending over 200 hours working with the Ruby Slippers, Wallace confesses that, while she is glad the Ruby Slippers are back on display, she misses having them around the Conservation Lab. Perhaps that's why her Halloween costume this year included a pair of red heels onto which she attached rows of sparkling red sequins. "After working with the real thing for so long, I just had to try my hand at sequinning my own pair of Ruby Slippers," Wallace said.

Ruby Slippers conservation is complete - YouTube

In this video, Wallace shares why she'll miss having the shoes around the Conservation Lab. 

Erin Blasco manages the museum's blog and social media outreach.

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Posted Date: 
Thursday, December 6, 2018 - 08:30
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Sesame Street was an innovative and radical children's television program when it premiered in 1969. 

In the 1960s, many parents were concerned about the amount of violence and commercialism in children's television. Children were watching more and more television: according to some studies, preschool-aged children were watching 27 hours of TV per week. Critics began to study the correlation between television content and children's behavior. At the same time, educators began investigating broadcast media as a way to reach underserved audiences, especially young learners living in poverty who might not be as prepared for school as wealthier Americans.

Using the colorful and fast-paced language of children's television to reach diverse communities with innovative new ideas about child development, Sesame Street sought to prepare toddlers for school and educate them to be tolerant, inquisitive citizens. The show became a cultural sensation that encouraged not only children but also adults to embrace diversity in a time of social conflict.

Sketch of the set for the National Museum of History and Technology exhibit "Ten Years of Sesame Street" (1979) painted by Alan Compton, Sesame Street set designer

The idea for Sesame Street traces back to a dinner party in 1966. Television producer Joan Ganz Cooney was hosting psychologist Lloyd N. Morrisett, an executive at the philanthropic Carnegie Corporation, when their conversation turned to children's television. Morrisett recalled that his three-year-old daughter would absorb some of the numerous advertising jingles that she heard on television commercials. He and Cooney wondered what could be achieved if all of the tools employed by television advertisers and performers were applied to education.

With funding from Carnegie, the Ford Foundation, and the Department of Education, among others, Cooney and Morrisett established the Children's Television Workshop. They began to develop a groundbreaking new show. The program would air on the new Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) network, with funding from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, allowing children and families across the country to watch the show without commercials. The mission of the show was to provide pre-kindergarten education to a diverse audience through memorable musical numbers, puppet performances, colorful cartoons, and deliberate representation of America's multicultural population.

In 2018 the museum is exploring this connection between philanthropy and children's television history in the "Culture and the Arts" section of Giving in America.

Storyboard pencil drawings of birds colored orange and red, used on "Sesame Street" Season 15The original Cookie Monster puppet created in 1969 for "Sesame Street" 

One of the show's writers, Jon Stone, suggested Jim Henson create the puppets. Although he never wanted to be identified as a children's entertainer, Henson decided to become part of the project. He embraced the idea of supporting underserved children. Henson's puppets helped display a diversity of personalities  in a neighborhood that teaches how people care about each other. Every puppet was created with the purpose of representing different roles and attitudes. For instance, Elmo is meant to have the psychological age of three-and-a-half.

What would the new program be called? The show's working title, 1-2-3 Avenue B, was deemed too New York-centric for a show intended for audiences across the United States. Hundreds of title ideas were considered. At the last minute, Executive Producer Dave Connell distributed a memo stating, "If nobody came up with a better idea, as of Monday we were going to call it Sesame Street."

The iconic "Sesame Street" sign joined the museum's collection in 1979.

Almost 50 years later, Sesame Street continues to educate children around the world. Now, there is a Sesame Street in more than 150 countries. Through Sesame Workshop, children from a variety of family types and environments are able to learn about culture, diversity, and other important values.

Gabriela Sama is a curatorial intern in the Division of the Culture and the Arts.

Giving in America is part of the museum's Philanthropy Initiative made possible through the support of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and David M. Rubenstein, with additional support by the Fidelity Charitable Trustees' Initiative, a grantmaking program of Fidelity Charitable.
 

Author(s): 
Gabriela Sama
Posted Date: 
Monday, November 26, 2018 - 16:30
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Title page to Garrard Conley's workbook from the gay-conversion camp Love in Action

It is dangerous to be different, and certain kinds of difference are especially risky. Race, disability, and sexuality are among the many ways people are socially marked that can make them vulnerable. The museum recently collected materials to document gay-conversion therapy (also called "reparative therapy")—and these objects allow curators like myself to explore how real people experience these risks. With the help of the Mattachine Society of Washington, D.C., Garrard Conley gave us the workbook he used in 2004 at a now defunct religious gay-conversion camp in Tennessee, called "Love in Action." We also received materials from John Smid, who was camp director. Conley's memoir of his time there, Boy Erased, chronicles how the camp's conversion therapy followed the idea that being gay was an addiction that could be treated with methods similar to those for abating drug, alcohol, gambling, and other addictions. While there, Conley spiraled into depression and suicidal thoughts. Conley eventually escaped. Smid eventually left Love in Action and married a man.

In the United States, responses to gay, homosexual, queer, lesbian, bisexual, transsexual, and gender non-conforming identities have fluctuated from "Yes!" and "Who cares?" to legal sanctions, medical treatment, violence, and murder. When and why being LGBTQ+ became something that needed "fixing" has a checkered history. In the late 1800s attempts intensified to prevent, cure, or punish erotic and sexual desires that were not female-male. Non-conforming behavior underwent a dramatic shift as the word "homosexuality" (coined in 1869)—a counter to heterosexuality—became popular. The main objections to non-binary orientations were based in physiology and psychology, religion, and beliefs about morality and politics.

Love in Action curriculum materials, including "A Tangled 'Ball' of Emotions" ("panic," "despair," "loneliness," and "loss" among them, with "denial" in the center

When non-conforming identities were considered a medical disease, psychiatrists used medical treatments, such as electroconvulsive shock, lobotomy, drugs, and psychoanalysis to cure or prevent "deviancy." Psychologists in the 1960s and 1970s described being LGBTQ+ as an attachment disorder—that people were attached to inappropriate erotic or sexual desires. They believed that using aversions (such as electrical shock stimuli) could modify behavior and lead to heterosexuality and "cure." It did not work.

Lobotomy knives of the sort used to "treat" homosexuality in the 1950s–1970s

Homosexuality was considered a psychiatric disorder until 1973, when it was removed from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). It returned to later editions under other names, downgraded to maladjustment. After science got out of the bedroom, the law removed itself as well in 2003 with the Lawrence v. Texas Supreme Court decision that invalidated sodomy laws. For the last 20 years or so, conversion therapy has been discredited scientifically and is no longer medically approved as effective or appropriate.

Electromagnetic shock device used in the late 1900s

Just as religious conviction and faith are part of some addiction programs, religious beliefs about sexuality and gender form the only remaining justifications for "gay conversion." Religion justifies conversion, frames the therapy, and is called upon as strength for an individual's "cure." Although outlawed in several states, religion-based seminars, camps, and individual sessions continue. Attempts to "save" a person through reforming or curing a desire deemed sinful often have damaging effects. For example, bullying of and discrimination against LGBTQ+ youth contribute to high rates of suicide, addiction, and depression.

Being different can be dangerous.

Katherine Ott is a curator in the Division of Medicine and Science. She has also blogged about objects she collected from the parents of Matthew Shepard and collecting LGBTQ+ objects of the past.

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Posted Date: 
Thursday, November 15, 2018 - 08:00
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Suffering from "shell shock and a general breakdown," Charles Mackall and James Randall arrived in Philadelphia in September 1918 from military service in France in the Great War. Mackall had been in trenches on the front line and had lain unconscious for 10 days. Randall had been a water tank driver. His afflictions, a newspaper article in The Chicago Defender reported, had left him unfit for military service.

During World War I, black soldiers served in segregated units. Image courtesy of Scurlock Studio Records, Archives Center.

The men belonged to the United States Army's 301st Quartermaster Corps, a unit providing support to combat troops. In spite of their service to the country and their "invalided condition," the two injured soldiers lacked access to medical care available to other troops. The reason: Mackall and Randall were African American. However, thanks to the philanthropic efforts of black Americans and white supporters, both men "were immediately provided for," the Defender explained, "by the Crispus Attucks Circle, an organization for war and relief work among our Race."

Black Philadelphians formed the Crispus Attucks Circle for War Relief to raise funds for Mercy Hospital, an institution serving black soldiers. African American philanthropists in other parts of the country held benefits for the hospital. Princeton University Poster Collection, Archives Center.

Since the colonial era, in times of peace and war, the African American experience of inequality included being denied medical treatment equal to that received by white peers. Unequal treatment continued during World War I. Not even the era's increasing humanitarian efforts were immune to inequality.

 A theater lantern slide from World War I, encouraging civilians to become involved in the war effort and humanitarianism. Image courtesy of World War One Theater Lantern Slides, Archives Center.

After the United States entered the conflict in April 1917, millions of Americans donated to the American Red Cross and other relief agencies to help U.S. troops and foreign civilians. Along with their other contributions, women knitted hats, mittens, and other woolens for soldiers; conserved foodstuffs to ensure an adequate supply for the military and overseas civilians; and volunteered at recreational centers for troops stationed in the United States. Thousands of women volunteered to go abroad to aid soldiers and foreign civilians. These and other contributions made by millions of Americans provided vital aid to American troops and extended the tradition of American philanthropy overseas to assist many more people. African American women and men participated in the ways all Americans did, yet white-led relief organizations routinely maintained segregated facilities, limited opportunities for black community members to become involved, and denied or provided unequal services to black soldiers and civilians.

Thousands of women put on uniforms during World War I to volunteer in countless ways, from supporting civilian relief efforts in war-torn Europe to running social centers for servicemen, stateside and abroad. This uniform belonged to Mabel C. S. D'Olier, a white woman who volunteered with the American Friends Service Committee. Racism affected the experience of African American women volunteering, as well. Two women volunteering with YMCA remembered, "The service of the colored welfare workers was more or less clouded at all times with that biting and stinging thing which is ever shadowing us in our own country."

In the face of this long history of discrimination, African Americans during World War I worked to help members of their community. The Crispus Attucks Circle for War Relief, the group that helped Mackall and Randall, was one such effort. Led by the well-known Archdeacon Henry L. Philips and other African American community leaders, the organization raised funds for Mercy Hospital, a new hospital being built under African American control to serve African American soldiers.

Archdeacon Henry L. Phillips, who helped raise funds for Mercy Hospital. Image courtesy of Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, Manuscripts, Archives and Rare Books Division, The New York Public Library.

The group's name honored a notable figure from the country's founding years. In 1770 Crispus Attucks, a Massachusetts man of African and Native ancestry, was the first casualty of the Boston Massacre and thus of the American Revolution. Invoking Attucks reminded the public of the sacrifices African Americans had long made for the country.

The aims of Mercy Hospital encompassed more than providing medical care to African American patients. The hospital also sought to employ and train black medical staff. That aspect of the mission helped efforts to promote equality by creating professional opportunities for black doctors and nurses, who were denied similar opportunities in other hospitals. An increase in well-trained African American medical staff promised greater access to good medical care for African American patients.

Mackall and Randall received assistance from the Crispus Attucks Circle while work on Mercy Hospital was underway. By the spring of 1919, the hospital was ready to open formally. Many people contributed—from John T. Gibson, a successful African American theater owner who donated a couple days' proceeds, to John Wanamaker, a white department store magnate whose store featured a window display for the fundraising drive. On June 1, the hospital was dedicated. Various dignitaries spoke, and, as a newspaper reported, "solos were rendered by Mme. Florence Cole Talbert, of Detroit, and Miss Marian Anderson" of Philadelphia.

Two decades later, in 1939, Marian Anderson performed at the Lincoln Memorial because the Daughters of the American Revolution barred her from singing at Constitution Hall because of her race. Image courtesy of Scurlock Studio Records, Archives Center.

In 1943, when the United States was fighting in another world war, the now-famous Anderson sang at an American Red Cross benefit held at Constitution Hall. A few years earlier, she had been denied the opportunity to perform there because of her race. At this event, not only did she perform, but also the hall sold tickets "without discrimination." Like many other African Americans, she was again contributing to the country's war and relief efforts. She was also continuing the struggle for African American equality and independence that had shaped the philanthropy of supporters of the Crispus Attucks Circle.

Amanda B. Moniz is the David M. Rubenstein Curator of Philanthropy in the Division of Work and Industry.

The Philanthropy Initiative is made possible by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and David M. Rubenstein, with additional support by the Fidelity Charitable Trustees' Initiative, a grantmaking program of Fidelity Charitable.

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Posted Date: 
Thursday, November 8, 2018 - 13:30
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"How old would you be if you didn't know how old you are?" – Satchel Paige

With a professional baseball career spanning the jazz age to the space age, pitcher Leroy Robert “Satchel” Paige (1906—1982) established himself not only as one of the most dominant American athletes of all time, but also as one of the most remarkable. Thanks to a generous gift, the museum recently acquired a baseball signed by Paige, inspiring us to share the story of this timeless legend.

Official American Association baseball autographed in ink by pitcher Satchel Paige, around 1970–1980. Gift of Thomas Tull.

Paige earned the nickname “Satchel” as a boy, when he made money carrying passengers' bags at the train station in his hometown of Mobile, Alabama. Sent to the Industrial School for Negro Children in Mount Meigs at the age of 12 for the minor offense of stealing some toy rings from a store, Paige worked on his baseball skills until his release just before his 18th birthday.

Satchel Paige baseball card, 1953. Note the misspelling of his first name.

In 1924 Paige earned his first baseball paycheck pitching for the semi-professional Mobile Tigers. Paige's lanky 6'3" frame helped him dominate the semi-pro opposition, and he was signed to the Negro Southern League’s Chattanooga Black Lookouts in 1926.

Paige thus began his lengthy and nomadic professional baseball career. Records for the various Negro League Organizations are scarce and incomplete, but we know that between 1926 and 1947 Paige played for the Lookouts, the Birmingham Black Barons, the Baltimore Black Sox, the Cleveland Cubs, the Pittsburgh Crawfords, the Kansas City Monarchs, the New York Black Yankees, the Memphis Red Sox, and the Philadelphia Stars. He also moonlighted in other exhibition games and winter leagues, and by "barnstorming" with rural traveling teams.

Baseball signed by Negro League players, including Satchel Paige.

Paige was beloved not only for his dominance on the mound, but for his enthusiasm and cocksure personality. He loved to impress the crowd, striking out batters with speed and control. Paige excelled with the 1942 Kansas City Monarchs, who won the Negro League World Series. The team, managed by Frank Duncan, and led by Paige and Buck O’Neil, is considered one of the most talented teams in Negro League history. As O’Neil has said of the club, “I do believe we could have given the New York Yankees a run for their money that year.”

Negro League jacket patch, Buck O’Neil, 1942 Monarchs

Paige finally got his chance to pitch before Major League audiences in 1948, two years after Jackie Robinson broke baseball’s color barrier with the Brooklyn Dodgers. Signed mid-season by the Cleveland Indians, the oldest rookie in Major League history at 42 years old, he set attendance records in Cleveland and Chicago on his first three starts. 

Paige went 6-1 with the Indians, helping the team reach the World Series, where, called to the mound in Game 5, he became the first African American player to pitch in a Major League championship game. The Indians would take the title, defeating the Braves four games to two.

After pitching for Cleveland for another year, Paige briefly left Major League Baseball, barnstorming for a couple of years before returning to the Majors in 1951, signing with the St. Louis Browns and being named to two All-Star teams.

Baseball, signed by the 1951 St. Louis Browns, including Satchel Paige

After leaving the Browns in 1953, Paige continued to pitch for barnstorming teams and in the minor leagues. Paige’s last Major League appearance was in 1965, when at 59 he played one game for the Kansas City A’s and threw three shutout innings against the Boston Red Sox.

Paige’s last turns on the mound came in 1967, pitching for the Indianapolis Clowns, the last all-black baseball club. By his own estimation, he had pitched in about 2,500 games before putting down his glove for good.

Despite his popularity, success, and lengthy career, Paige’s legacy has been overlooked due to racial inequities. It is a testament to his abilities and charisma that he could become a living legend, despite being forced to play outside of the Major Leagues for the majority of his career and doing so while facing wide-ranging discriminatory practices and bigotry. As he said himself in 1982, the year of his death, “They said I was the greatest pitcher they ever saw. . . . I couldn’t understand why they couldn’t give me no justice.” 

Eric W. Jentsch is Curator of Popular Culture and Sports for the Division of Culture and the Arts.

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Posted Date: 
Tuesday, October 23, 2018 - 02:30
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