Sunday, July 4, 1999
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