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on March 7, 2001
The story of race relations in American history is one of lost opportunity. This concise history of the Negro Baseball Leagues for young adult readers illustrates this basic point. The book discusses the names, dates, and circumstances of the major figures and events of the flip side of American baseball history. Legendary names such as Josh Gibson, "Cool Papa" Bell, and Satchel Page are just a few of the remarkable players who made important contributions to the game. Among others, they played for teams with names such as The Homestead Grays, The St. Louis Stars, and The Kansas City Monarchs. The book also tells the story of owners and managers, such names as Negro National League founder Rube Foster and the tough as nails woman owner of the Newark Eagles, Effa Manley spring to mind. The book also briefly explains how the infamous Jim Crow tradition brought about the Negro Baseball saga. In 1947, major league baseball was sucessfully integrated and that spelled the doom of the Negro Baseball leagues. The text includes an ample number of photographs. To assist younger readers, and for easy reference purposes, a player profile and time line section is provided at the back of the book. Underlying the historical text, there is the theme that segregated baseball mirrored the nagging problem of racism in America. A sense of fair play and even-handed justice demands that talent, skill, and just plain style should be celebrated, regardless of race. To do otherwise cheats everybody of a rewarding experience. Imagine if the great players of the Negro Baseball Leagues had the chance to play (with or against) the great players of the major leagues. Consider the void created by lost opportunity. ;-)
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on December 25, 2011
This was a good story of the Black leagues. I bought the book to teach in my high school reading class. I found it very informative and exciting. I would recommend to anyone interested in the history of the black leagues. It is well written, unlike a book of facts. The McKissack's continue to write good books for young audiences that can also be enjoyed by adults!
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on February 26, 2010
Today I gave a book about the Negro Leagues of Baseball to a traveling friend. Its a book I've read more than once and felt that my friend would truly enjoy. It felt like giving a gift that you wanted to keep for yourself. I parted with the book knowing that my friend would enjoy reading it on his journey back east. Before giving him the book I spent about thirty minutes flipping through its pages and saying goodbye to some of the stories in it. I know I'll come across the book again, but for me, parting with books is like wishing a friend well on a journey, just as this friend of mine was journeying. Its great to send a visiting friend off with a friendly gift.

Well, in leafing through the book's pages I came across a few paragraphs I wanted to retain as a memory of my friend the book. Here below are the book and the lines from it that show in words what the negro baseball players faced every day of their lives; a color barrier that prevented them from gaining national sports recognition as professionals of the game they loved so much, baseball. Though Negro men had proven themselves heroic, capable of soldiering bravely in foreign battles of World War II, America was still treating them as second class citizens or less here at home. Major League Baseball would lead the nation in recovering from its racial prejudicial past. The nation today, even with a Black President, is still playing catch up.

excerpt from Black Diamond: "Only one thing is keeping them out of the big leagues, and that is the pigmentation of their skin." Shirley Povich washington post
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on November 28, 2006
Black Diamond by Patricia C. McKissack and Fredrick McKissack, Jr

It's mainly a book about baseball, but it tells you all about how baseball affected black's rights and treatments. You learn about the ways that fans and other players mistreated black players, even on their own team! They were somehow able to beat racism, and get black players into Major League Baseball. That lead to more black respect and freedom, eventually helping give blacks as much freedom as everyone else. I recommend this book to anyone who likes baseball and learning about black history. One of the best parts is that it is never, at any point, boring. This is also a great book for anyone 10 to 14 years old that likes learning about our country's history, or baseball's history. I completely recommend it.
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on December 18, 2014
My husband wanted to reading about the Negro Baseball and this a great addition to his library
Our library doesn't haveinformation so this book is his start. Tthank you
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on March 11, 2013
I am already a baseball fan and knew a bit about the Negro leagues, but I learned a lot more reading this book.
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on August 10, 2014
This book was very informative, covering all aspects of game.
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on November 13, 2015
Bought this as a gift for my sister in law. She loved it!
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on January 22, 2016
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on February 19, 2015
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