Sunday, July 4, 1999
Calling games for the very best who played
BY JOHN ERARDI
The Cincinnati Enquirer
Percy Reed, 89, told Enquirer reporter Allen Howard in 1992, that as a Negro League umpire in the 1930s and 1940s, "I saw the very best: Satchel Paige, Josh Gibson, Rube Foster (founder of the Negro Leagues) to name a few."
Mr. Reed was a small man - 5-foot-3, 100 pounds - and when he umpired behind a big catcher, like Mr. Gibson, "I hung right over his shoulder."
Mr. Reed took no guff.
"I never had to throw anybody out of a game. When they started arguing a call, I would take out my watch. That meant they had one minute to argue. After the one minute, I started the game again."
Negro League Stories