Jackie Robinson breaking the MLB colour barrier
Brooklyn, NY. (April 15th, 1947)— Jack Roosevelt “Jackie” Robinson became the first black player, in the modern era, to play professional baseball. Robinson was erroneously bestowed the moniker of the first black man to play professional baseball, this honour goes to Moses Walker of the Toledo Blue Stockings who played his first game on May 1st, 1884. Not only was he the first black man to play, he was later joined by his brother, Welday Walker, who played in six games with Toledo. In 1889, professional baseball imposed a ‘colour barrier’ that stood for 58 years until April 15th, 1947 when Jackie Robinson took the field for the first time.
The Movie, ’42’
Being a proud Montrealer and aware of baseball’s history in our city, I awaited the release of ’42’ in the theatres with anticipation. I was fortunate enough to score tickets to the advanced screening(thanks Chris) for the movie. My expectations were quite high and was afraid that the film would not meet them. From the first flash of film to hit the screen to the last, I sat there in awe! 42 is an important movie, not only chronicling Jackie’s rise to baseball fame, but how he also helped shape future generations. As I watched with intense focus, waves of emotions from tears to laughter waved by. This is an important film that is a must see, not only for baseball fans, but for everyone. The one component the film did lack was the ‘Montreal element.’ The lack of Montreal content was the only disappointment. Robinson being chased by a mob of white people, not to lynch him, but rather to adore and be near him would have been a nice touch.
Go see the movie!
List of the first players to break the colour barrier.
|Jackie Robinson †||Brooklyn Dodgers, NL||April 15, 1947|
|Larry Doby †||Cleveland Indians, AL||July 5, 1947|
|Hank Thompson||St. Louis Browns, AL||July 17, 1947|
|Monte Irvin †||New York Giants, NL||July 8, 1949|
|Hank Thompson||New York Giants, NL||July 8, 1949|
|Sam Jethroe||Boston Braves, NL||April 18, 1950|
|Minnie Miñoso||Chicago White Sox, AL||May 1, 1951|
|Bob Trice||Philadelphia Athletics, AL||September 13, 1953|
|Ernie Banks †||Chicago Cubs, NL||September 17, 1953|
|Curt Roberts||Pittsburgh Pirates, NL||April 13, 1954|
|Tom Alston||St. Louis Cardinals, NL||April 13, 1954|
|Nino Escalera||Cincinnati Reds, NL||April 17, 1954|
|Chuck Harmon||Cincinnati Reds, NL||April 17, 1954|
|Carlos Paula||Washington Senators, AL||September 6, 1954|
|Elston Howard||New York Yankees, AL||April 14, 1955|
|John Kennedy||Philadelphia Phillies, NL||April 22, 1957|
|Ozzie Virgil, Sr.||Detroit Tigers, AL||June 6, 1958|
|Pumpsie Green||Boston Red Sox, AL||July 21, 1959|