Negro baseball
Posted by bluesky93 (+93) 9 years ago
I am wondering about the original baseball field as well as baseball history in M.C. from the early 1900's. Any suggestions where to begin?
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Posted by Stone (+1595) 9 years ago
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Posted by Kelly (+2691) 9 years ago
bluesky93 wrote:
Any suggestions where to begin?


My first thought was to not use the word Negro, but then again I'm a pinko, commie, liberal.
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Posted by Amorette Allison (+11728) 9 years ago
I'm curious as to why ask about "negro" baseball. There weren't separate parks in Miles City. The was one baseball field on North Fourth Street and, of course, a diamond or two at Fort Keogh. That was before Denton Field, which was built in 1939 as a final WPA project.
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Posted by bluesky93 (+93) 9 years ago
Actually I am assisting a family member with research on player named John Donaldson who was a pitcher on a negro team that may have made MC a regular stop in the early 1900's. Donaldson played on 3 teams named "All Nations" around 1915, "Colored House of David" around 1929, and "Satchel Paige's All Stars" near 1939. These teams played in Sidney, Glendive, and Helena to name a few of the stops along the way.
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Posted by Amorette F. Allison (+1915) 9 years ago
Usually, those teams would stop on each town big enough to have a ball field that was on the rail line. The Bloomer Girls were very popular in early Miles City. They came through annually for several years. One year, maybe 1910ish, they brought their own generator and a few lights and played a night game. It wasn't entirely successful but everybody enjoyed it.
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Posted by Jeri Dalbec (+3209) 9 years ago
I have a book, "Blackball Stars", Negro League Pioneers, by John B. Holway. Several pages have information about John Donaldson, one of the best left-handers in black annals. It talks about how they barnstormed through the little towns of prairie America__Iowa, Missouri, Nebraska, the Dakotas _ traveling in a special Pullman, which had cost $25,000.

It says they toured with a wrestling team and a dance band, so at each town they offered a ball game and wrestling match, followed by a dance. They even brought their own bleachers and canvas fence.

There is a bit of info on about four or five pages of the book. If you would like to email me at [email protected], I can scan the pages and send them to you.
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Posted by Dave Golterman (+241) 9 years ago
I know Satchel Paige played for a semi-pro team in Bismarck, ND in the mid-30's. I'm not sure if the person you are researching played with him then.

I would check the references located at the end of these articles:

http://en.wikipedia.org/w...Churchills
http://en.wikipedia.org/w...chel_Paige
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Posted by bluesky93 (+93) 9 years ago
thanks for your help
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Posted by Badland Bandit (+10) 6 years ago
There is a lot of information about Donaldson in Montana, but the history is focussed in the Plentywood/Scobey area. He was brought in to pitch in Plentywood as part of a huge baseball rival between them and the Scobey, the Wheat capital of the world at the time. This cause the Scobey supporters to bring in some ringers of their own, a couple of the Chicago Black Sox after they had been banned from baseball. I'll try to find out exactly, but I've been told that the information and heritage around baseball in both towns is plentiful. With that being said, very little is making its way to the Internet, so you have to find it the hard way. Phone calls and visits.
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Posted by Cindy Stalcup (+584) 6 years ago
In Google, put "John Donaldson" inside quotes and the word baseball by itself.
Then before hitting search, pull down on the "more" option and pick books, then hit search. This will give you lots and lots of hits for him on google books. Some are excerpts only, some give access to entire books.

The other thing you can do is search old newspapers for free, through Google news and also through Chronicling America.  

Also Google images has quite a few pictures of him.
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