Why Black Baseball Matters

Sunday, April 28th, 2:30 pm Central Time
Where: via Zoom

In 1920 Andrew “Rube” Foster established the Negro National League in Kansas City, Missouri. Featuring teams in Chicago, Cincinnati, Dayton, Detroit, Indianapolis, Kansas City, and St. Louis, the NNL adopted the slogan “We Are the Ship, All Else the Sea” as a pledge to set its own course. Many teams discovered financial success coming out of the gate; Foster’s American Giants drew nearly 200,000 spectators during the 1921 season.

The NNL created a forum where many star players could make a bigger name for themselves — especially to white audiences. Future Hall of Famers Cool Papa Bell, Martín Dihigo, Willie Foster, Judy Johnson, Satchel Paige, and Turkey Stearnes all flourished in the NNL, along with many others. The creation of the Negro Leagues proved that Black players could play on even terms with their white counterparts — and draw just as much interest from baseball fans.

Larry Lester, co-founder of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, located near the AG site, will discuss how these men of color changed the landscape of American history and became a bridge over troubled waters. When you place their achievements against the background of discrimination and political resistance, it makes all of baseball history more impressive in its efforts toward social change.

Theodore Talks take place via Zoom on the fourth Sunday of each month at 2:30 pm Central Time.

Register for this presentation at: https://tinyurl.com/mwkyx55e. Registration rates are free for all members.

You must register for each lecture with an email address associated with your Zoom account. If you don’t have one, you can sign up for a free Zoom account at:  https://zoom.us/signup.

Even if you can’t attend the live Theodore Talk, as long as you register in advance you will receive a link to the Zoom recording of the event. All Theodore Talks have closed captioning enabled.

NOTE:  This is the fourth of six Theodore Talks focusing on KC-related subjects leading up to the 2024 AG, which will be held in Kansas City, July 3-7. You can learn more about the AG here.

Questions? Contact Brad Lucht at [email protected].