Kelly Boyer Sagert – The History -The Man – The Pipeyard

April 25, 2008 at 6:11 pm 5 comments


Our own Kelly Boyer Sagert has written “ The History of the Negro Leagues” that will be used in Sunday’s Program at the Pipe Yard. You can link to her website here and also a list of books that have been written by Kelly including “Baseball’s All-Time Greatest Hitters: Joe Jackson (Greenwood Publishing, 2004),” can be found at the end of this article


History of the Negro Leagues and the Role of Andrew “Rube” Foster

In February 1920, Andrew “Rube” Foster organized the first successful Negro League – called the “Negro National League” – and Foster therefore became known as the “Father of Black Baseball.”

Foster’s triumph came after black baseball players had spent several challenging decades trying to just play ball. America’s original baseball league was the National Association of Base Ball Players (“base ball” was the original spelling of the sport). This league, formed in 1867, banned black players from participating.

By the late 1870s, however, several black players were on the rosters of minor league teams – and, in 1884, a black player was signed to a team in a professional major league. The league was the American Association – and the player was Moses “Fleetwood” Walker of Oberlin, Ohio.

After only a few years of integrated play for a handful of talented stars, though, black players were once again barred from participating in professional baseball. So, they formed all-black baseball teams and “barnstormed,” traveling from town to town, looking for another team to challenge to a game. They got paid by dividing the money that was collected by selling tickets to the game. More than one person tried to organize these teams into a league, but the financial and organizational burdens were too great.

Foster himself was a pitcher, beginning his career with the Chicago Union Giants in 1905, where he chalked up an amazing 51 wins. The following year, he had an astonishing 54-1 pitching record with the Cuban X-Giants. In 1907, he began pitching for the Philadelphia Giants, leaving that team when he accepted a job as the player-manager for the Leland Giants.

In 1910, Foster formed the Chicago American Giants, one of the best black baseball teams in history, sometimes pitching for his team; it is believed that this team won 11 championships.

Then, in 1920, Foster successfully formed a Negro League, the first person to do so. This league consisted of eight teams:

• Chicago American Giants
• Chicago Giants
• Dayton Marcos
• Detroit Stars
• Indianapolis ABC’s
• Kansas City Monarchs
• St. Louis Giants
• Cuban Stars

Rube’s league operated until his death in 1930; the league disbanded in 1931 but it served as a model for the Negro League that formed in 1933.

On April 18, 1946, Jackie Robinson signed a contract with the Brooklyn Dodgers in the National League, playing a season on their minor league team and then joining the Dodgers in 1947; Robinson won the Rookie of the Year award.

Lary Doby became the first black star in the American League, first playing for the Cleveland Indians on July 5, 1947.

Today’s game between Lorain Admiral King and Southview High School, held at The Pipeyard in Lorain, Ohio on April 27, 2008, will be played in honor of all of these men who played baseball for the love of the sport and with passion and conviction – but today’s game will specifically commend Andrew “Rube” Foster and his outstanding accomplishments in the sport of baseball.

Books by Kelly Boyer Sagert
Pop Culture of the 70s (Greenwood Publishing, project release December 2006)

FabJob Guide to Become a Funeral Director (FabJob, 2005), a self explanatory title

Baseball’s All-Time Greatest Hitters: Joe Jackson (Greenwood Publishing, 2004), a look at one of the most talented-and controversial-athletes of our century. To promote this book, she spoke at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum and appeared on the ESPN2 program, “The Top Five Reasons You Can’t Blame the Black Sox.”

Birth of Illumination (2001), a work-for-hire book about the rise of the public library system in Toni Morrison’s hometown

‘Bout Boomerangs: America’s Silent Sport (PlantSpeak Publications, 1996), a book that the Australian boomerang coach called “nearly perfect”

Entry filed under: city of lorain, history, Link -ups.

Guest Blog- America’s “Past”-ime at the Pipe Yard Guest Blog – Kelly Boyer Sagert – Creative Beginnings

5 Comments Add your own

  • 1. muley  |  April 25, 2008 at 9:02 pm

    ……good to have you back Kelly. It’s a pleasure to read your thoughts on this, and other subjects too.

  • 2. Kelly Boyer Sagert  |  April 25, 2008 at 9:09 pm

    Thanks, Muley!

  • 3. Kelly Boyer Sagert  |  April 25, 2008 at 11:09 pm

    Thanks, Loraine, for all this great press!

  • 4. Loraine Richey  |  April 26, 2008 at 11:21 am

    No problem!!!

  • 5. Katy Widrick  |  June 12, 2008 at 4:03 pm

    My company does video news stories on great people with awesome attitudes — they don’t get much better than some of the Negro League players who broke barriers in baseball!

    You can see a video we did at MLB’s recent symbolic draft of Negro League players, which includes Millito Navarro, Peanut Johnson, Charley Pride and Bill Blair as well as Ken Griffey and Dave Winfield.

    I hope you enjoy it!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Trackback this post  |  Subscribe to the comments via RSS Feed



Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 230 other followers

April 2008

%d bloggers like this: