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Dugout Reading . . . . .

Early Black Baseball in Minnesota: The St. Paul Gophers, Minneapolis Keystones and Other Barnstorming Teams of the Deadball Era by Todd Peterson, may be the only source for information about teams before Rube Foster, Dave Wyatt and C.I. Taylor formed the first Negro League. Author/Artist Peterson lays out the early history of African American baseball in the Upper Midwest. Included are new statistics and more than 50 rarely seen photographs. Peterson is a visual artist and teacher who has published in the Baseball Research Journal and the Black Ball Journal.

Curveball: The Remarkable Story of Toni Stone, The First Woman to Play Professional Baseball in the Negro League by Martha Ackmann. Professor Ackmann catalogs the remarkable career of Tomboy Toni as she faced racism and sexism on the playing field. Read about this seldom known footnote in history about the woman who broke the gender barrier in professional baseball.

Integrating Cleveland Baseball: Media Activism, the Integration of the Indians and the Demise of the Negro League Buckeyes by Stephanie M. Liscio. Focusing on the Negro American League Buckeyes, this detailed history describes the effects of major league integration on blackball in Cleveland, as well as the controversial role that the local black press played in the transformation.

Rickwood Field: A Century in America’s Oldest Ballpark by Allen Barra. A contributing editor of American Heritage magazine, Barra regularly writes about sports for the Wall Street Journal. The best-selling author of books on Yogi Berra and Bear Bryant chronicles the ghosts of great players who still haunt baseball’s oldest cathedral. The home to more than 100 Cooperstown Hall of Famers, Rickwood Field is baseball’s Garden of Eden. A must-read book for ballpark collectors.

Satch, Dizzy & Rapid Robert: The Wild Saga of Interracial Baseball before Jackie Robinson by Timothy M. Gay. Historian Gay has unearthed long- forgotten exhibitions where Paige and Dean dueled on the same diamond in segregated America. In later years, Bob Feller assembled his own team to face Paige and other star blackballers. Buy the book and find out who won these contests. The book is extensively researched and referenced.

Baseball in Birmingham by Clarence Watkins. The Birmingham Barons were charter members of the old Southern League back in 1885. Author Watkins traces baseball in Birmingham from its roots to today’s efforts to build a museum near Rickwood Field, with more than 160 vintage photographs. Read chapter four about the Black Barons. It is the ultimate reference book for baseball in the South. Check it out.

The Courier, September, 2010 – a SABR publication – Page 6 of 10

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