Sunday, July 4, 1999
The Negro Leagues

        1886: First black league formed (Southern League of Colored Baseballists).

        1887: Cincinnati Browns enter second black league formed (League of Colored Baseball Players).

        1920: Rube Foster organizes the best of the then independent black teams into the Negro National League.

        1921: Cuban Stars, drawn to Cincinnati in part by presence of star Reds pitcher Dolf (the Pride of Havana) Luque, become first Negro League team to rent major-league park (Redland Field) for full year.

        1934: Cincinnati native DeHart Hubbard, the first African-American to win a individual gold medal in the Olympics (long jump, 1924, Paris), founds the Cincinnati Tigers.

        1935: Cincinnati native Percy Reed travels extensively with the Tigers and umpires numerous Negro Leagues games.

        1937: Tigers enter the newly formed Negro American League (NAL) led by big-time manager Ted (Double Duty) Radcliffe and Cincinnati native pitchers Porter Moss (submarining right-hander), Jesse Houston (23-game winner) and Roy Partlow (16-year Negro Leaguer who was also a fine hitter — 1940 Puerto Rican Winter League batting champ, .443). 1938: Tigers disperse, as several key players — including manager Radcliffe, Moss and star slugger Neil Robinson — hook on with the Memphis Red Sox, leading them to the NAL title.

        1940: Cincinnati Buckeyes play in the Negro Leagues.

        1942: Two Cincinnati teams play in the Negro Leagues, the Cincinnati-Cleveland Buckeyes (starring future major leaguer Sam Jethroe) and the Cincinnati Clowns (1942-43).

        1944-45: The Clowns, who agree to tone down their act, officially begin play in the NAL, under the name Cincinnati-Indianapolis Clowns, including star outfielder Henry (Speed) Merchant, a Cincinnati native (1940-54 in the Negro Leagues).

        1946: Satchel Paige and slugger Luke Easter play for the Cincinnati Crescents in a late-fall/early winter Negro League.

        1947: Jackie Robinson breaks major-league color barrier; Tom Turner, future Tristate resident, breaks in with Chicago American Giants; Chuck Harmon, future Red, breaks in with Indianapolis Clowns.

        1948: Last season of the Negro National League.

        1949: Covington native Don Johnson breaks in with Chicago American Giants at Crosley Field, goes on to play four years in Negro Leagues (1949-52).

        1951: James Jenkins, future Tristate resident, breaks in with Indianapolis Clowns.

        1953: Charlie Davis, future Tristate resident, breaks in with Memphis Red Sox.

        1954: Chuck Harmon, future Tristate resident, breaks Reds color barrier; Cincinnati native Bunny Warren barnstorms with Detroit Stars.

        1958: Cincinnati native Sonny Webb barnstorms with Detroit Stars.

        1959: Last of the all-white major league teams (Boston Red Sox) is integrated (Pumpsie Green.)

        1960: Last year of the Negro American League (Birmingham Black Barons, Detroit-New Orleans Stars, Kansas City Monarchs and Raleigh Tigers.)


Negro League Stories
Tristate is home to eight alumni
Chuck Harmon
Tom Turner
Charlie Davis
Don Johnson
Bunny Warren
Sonny Webb
James Jenkins
Percy Reed
Negro Leagues timeline
Reds consider Negro League Night