East Chicago-Baseball Integrates Decades Before the Major Leagues or Little League Baseball

babe-ruth-ec-kiwanas-bball-teamThe great Jackie Robinson integrated major league baseball in 1948. But in East Chicago, Indiana boy’s baseball has been an integrated enterprise since 1924. The East Chicago Kiwanis boy’s baseball league pre-dates the American Little League which began in June 1939 in Williamsport, Pennsylvania when “Lundy Lumber Company” defeated Lycoming Dairy’s youth team in a 3-2 series in the best of three games. From these humble beginnings, Little League Baseball began in America. The sport became the world’s largest youth sports program. The city of East Chicago’s Kiwanis League began its youth baseball league in 1924 making it the oldest organized youth league in the nation. In the picture above the Sultan of Swing, “Babe Ruth” himself meets with me young players from the East Chicago Kiwanis League baseball team, at Chicago’s Comiskey Park.The team’s players represent the ethnic and racial “melting pot” neighborhoods that make up the fabric of this Rustbelt City, once a thriving industrial manufacturing corridor twenty miles southeast of Chicago’s Loop. (D.Day Media 2017)(c)

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