IOKTS Flashback from the Archives II
NEGRO LEAGUES CALENDARS - BLACKBALL
"Major League Baseball has finally decided that players from the Negro Leagues should be considered Major Leaguers. All 3,400 players - from 1920 to 1948 - will be elevated to MLB status." - NPR, Steve Inskeep
In 1993 we produced our first Negro League calendar, deciding to call it, "BlackBall." I spent many days and nights travelling to Cooperstown, NY, home of the Baseball Hall of Fame, to research the photo images of the Negro League players.
These guys and ladies (there were three to my knowledge} were bonafied legends. Satchel Paige, Josh Gibson, Cool Papa Bell and many, many others thrilled their fans with exquisite baseball and not only did they have more fans in attendance than the Major League games, they even outplayed the Major Leaguers, the few times they met head to head. One by one the Major League managers plucked the cream of the crop of Negro League players until the league eventually floundered. Some of the players that left the Negro Leagues for the Majors were Jackie Robinson, Hank Aaron, Willie Mays, Ernie Banks, Roy Campanella, and others. It was truly a joy to produce a calendar that featured these Giants of history, while preserving their legacies.
For those that are interested, we still have some back issues of BlackBall. Please email us with your request.