Friday, July 28, 2006

First woman in the Baseball Hall of Fame came from Negro Leagues

I was just cleaning up a pile of papers and noticed this story from last Sunday's New York Times.

Effa Manley 1900-1981
The first woman elected to the Hall of Fame, she was the business manager and co-owner, with her husband, Abe, of the Newark Eagles, who won the black World Series in 1946.

Her mother was white and was married to a black man, but she was conceived from an affair her mother had with a white man. Nonetheless, she lived her life as a black woman.

Founded as a Brooklyn team in 1935, the Eagles moved to Newark the following year, and the franchise helped promote civil-rights causes. On one occasion, an anti-lynching day was held at Newark’s Ruppert Stadium.

Manley called for strong leadership in the Negro leagues to prevent teams from stealing players under contract to other clubs. And when the major leagues began signing players from black baseball, and the Eagles lost Larry Doby, Monte Irvin and Don Newcombe, she fought to gain compensation for the Negro leagues club owners from the big leagues. She ran the Eagles until their demise after the 1948 season.

She must have been a heck of a lady. I needed to post something to cheer about today.

1 comment:

Arcturus said...

Stories like this remind us just how much "race" is really a social construct, dividing "them" from "us."

Your pictures from Lebanon are gorgeous -- and heart-breaking.

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