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Brushing Back Jim Crow: The Integration of Minor-League Baseball in the American South Paperback – February 16, 2007
From Publishers Weekly
Even after Jackie Robinson broke Major League Baseball's color barrier in 1947, segregation ruled the minor league circuits of the deep South, the backbone of organized baseball's player development system. Interracial competition was still banned, and black fans were barred from the grandstands and public facilities. Circuits such as the South Atlantic League, the Carolina League, the Texas League and many others would not be fully integrated until 1964, after a combination of talented black players, economics (paying black fans thronged to root for their own) and local black boycotts forced even notoriously resistant leagues such as the Southern Association to integrate. Adelson's outstanding survey of the period examines the groundbreaking role of professional baseball, which paved the way for social mixing of blacks and whites and anticipated the victories of the NAACP and the civil rights movement that would soon follow (there's also an excellent account of legislative and judicial decisions throughout the 1950s and '60s). Most importantly, Adelson documents the moving experiences of such extraordinary men as Percy Miller, who integrated the Carolina League in 1951; future big leaguers Manny Mota and Felipe Alou; future Hall of Famers Hank Aaron and Billy Williams; and visionary white owners, including Dave Burnett of the Texas League. Adelson's account of their struggles is much more than a good baseball book: it's a detailed history of how the struggle for integration and civil rights played out in the daily life of a profession that just happens to be the national pastime.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
The integration of the minor leagues is of great historical significance, not just for the history of baseball but for the history of race relations in the American South. Adelson knows these teams and their players, and he places his material, much of it new, in the context of other events taking place in the region, thereby capturing the dynamics and politics of the controversy. This is a valuable addition to the current literature not only for baseball fans but for anyone interested in American history.(Jules Tygiel, author of Baseball’s Great Experiment: Jackie Robinson and His Legacy)
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