In December, Major League Baseball finally committed to something that was bittersweet, yet long overdue: it officially recognized the Negro League for its groundbreaking contributions to professional sports by including its stats and records in MLB’s official database.
But instead of holding our breath waiting for Major League Baseball to explain why the Negro Leagues existed in the first damn place, our energy would be much better served by joining the Negro Southern League Museum in celebrating the Negro League’s 100th anniversary.
Located in the heart of Downtown Birmingham, Ala., the museum is hosting a virtual celebration this Sunday at 7 p.m. EST that will honor the unsung heroes who paved the way for baseball’s current crop of superstars. This blackstravaganza will also feature appearances by comedian Roy Wood Jr., Mayor Randall Woodfin, and former players from the Birmingham Black Barons and Raleigh Tigers.
“The establishing of the Negro Leagues is a significant milestone in American history,” Alicia Johnson Williams, director of the Negro Southern League Museum and Boutwell Auditorium, said in a statement provided to The Root. “Rube Foster, the Father of the Negro Leagues, accomplished the unspeakable by organizing for African Americans what was considered by many then, and equally as many now, the opportunity to play professional baseball in the Negro Leagues. This gave black star athletes a chance to do not only what they loved, but something they were very good at during such a tumultuous time as that of segregation.”
So why not join the Negro Southern League Museum in celebrating?
This free event will be going down on YouTube Live on January 17. So for any and all interested in attending, you can RSVP here.
To learn more about the Negro Southern League Museum, visit their website.