Library of Congress


The Library of Congress > Teachers > Classroom Materials > Collection Connections > Baseball Cards, 1887-1914

[Detail] A. A. Mattern/John Kling. Hassan Triple Folders, 1912.

Urbanization | Leisure Activities & Mass Entertainment | Segregation & The Struggle for Equality | Tobacco Industry

Segregation & The Struggle for Equality

Reflecting American society in general, amateur and professional baseball remained largely segregated in the early 1800s. In July 1887, the International League banned contracts with black players all together.

Students can browse the collection by player for evidence of this institutionalized prejudice. Segregation remained the rule in major league baseball until April, 1947 when Jackie Robinson stepped onto the field. Students can learn more about Robinson and Civil Rights in the special presentation "Baseball, the Color Line, and Jackie Robinson, 1860s-1960s" in Jackie Robinson and Other Baseball Highlights, 1860s-1960s.