In 1947, black baseball player Jackie Robinson became the first black man to integrate major league baseball in America. Robinson was recruited by Branch Rickey, the owner of the Dodgers and the Montreal Royals (the international affiliate of the Dodgers). Robinson was already a star on the field of the Kansas City Monarchs. He was headed for more Negro League exhibition (barnstorm) games against the white major league players when Rickey was looking to integrate the team. But as the world of baseball began to change in the eyes of Branch Rickey, so did the life of a phenomenal baseball player from Cairo, Georgia. Robinson’s entire life was flipped upside-down and he was given a tremendous responsibility to make all people see the game of baseball in an entirely different way.
After high school, Robinson attended UCLA, and became the first athlete to win varsity letters in four sports: baseball, basketball, football and track. He was named to the All-American football team in 1941. Lack of funds forced Robinson to leave college and join the military. He was on his way up the ranks until an incident involving racial discrimination resulted in a court marshal and honorable discharge from the Army.
Robinson joined the Monarchs in 1945. In only two years of the Negro Leagues, he was recruited by Rickey for the Brooklyn Dodgers. In his first year with the MLB team, Robinson earned the title of Rookie of the Year with 12 homers, a league-leading 29 steals, and a .297 average.
Personally, Jackie Robinson married college sweetheart Rachel Isum and the two had three children: Jackie Jr., Sharon and David Robinson.
In 1962, Robinson was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. Ten years later, Robinson died of heart problems and complications of diabetes. His Brooklyn Dodgers jersey number, number 42, is the only number retired in major league baseball history. He is a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the Congressional Gold Medal, Spingarn Medal and the National League Most Valuable Player Award.
Jackie Robinson and his long road to victory is told in the upcoming film “42” by award-winning Director Brian Helgeland (L.A. Confidential). This biopic tells the story of the courageous baseball player who accepted the challenge of integrating the all-white professional baseball league with the help of then Dodgers owner Branch Rickey in 1946; nearly twenty years before the civil rights movement.
The role of Jackie Robinson is portrayed by actor Chadwick Boseman, who embodies the character as if the current year is 1946, and he had never seen a bathroom door without a Jim Crow sign. Boseman is accompanied in the cast by Nicole Beharie who stars as Rachel, Robinson’s wife, and also his biggest fan and backbone. The story is brought together through the character portrayed by Academy-Award Nominee, Harrison Ford, who super-starred as Branch Rickey.
“42” starts in theaters April 12, 2013, three days before the actual annual “Jackie Robinson Day” is celebrated by all baseball teams. This year marks the 66th anniversary of Robinson’s break in history.
Also On Black America Web:
This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (10/15-10/21)
31 photos Launch gallery
1. Just a NY girl with BIG dreams....
1 of 31
2. HAPPY CHILDREN=QUALITY PARENTING. We don't always see eye to eye on everything and that's normal. We're human beings. But we come together and do it right for what's important, the kids. We are not enemies, we are parents. And we are parents 1st. S/O to @monyettashaw for making Mason's bday memorable. S/O to @itscrystalsmith at home taking care of our other lil' Prince. ❤️❤️❤️ THIS IS WHAT CO-PARENTING LOOKS LIKE. #Blessed #Happy #AboveTheDrama #BiggerThanUs
2 of 31
3. So happy to finally be able to share with you all that I’m the new Global Brand Ambassador for @Revlon! Follow my day on RevlonSnaps. Yay! Choose Love, Everybody! #RevlonXCiara #chooselove #ad
3 of 31
4. Glam on point!!!@makeupbymotoko & @shaylinjoneshair #easybreezy @lifetimetv #beachesmovie #january2017 😘
4 of 31
5. ✨True love ✨📸: @jessiemarrerophotography
5 of 31
6 of 31
7. Today was not easy..but by the grace of God we all got through it. Words cannot express our gratitude for all of your Prayers, Positive thoughts and Support for us throughout the years. Tommy will be missed but most certainly never forgotten...And PLEASE don't ask "Where's Martin?.." he was there too...just not in this picture. Lol! God bless you all.. #LoveConquersAll #MartinShow
7 of 31
8 of 31
9. West coast get ready for #RockyHorror. I will be live tweeting again. #letsdothetimewarpagain
9 of 31
10. #THEKEYS pre order yours now ... Available everywhere #NOV22 #WeTheBest 🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑
10 of 31
11. We about to ROCK at #KCABlackBall!! All for our life-changing effort to end 🌎 AIDS.
11 of 31
12. Today's #SNAPJACK is brought to you by @yazzthegreatest 😂😂😂💋💋💋
12 of 31
13. Damn girl you kinda old to be headed to the Go Go. You coming in at the age they leaving. LMAO
13 of 31
14. Daddy daycare B-Boxin with @acewellstucker @shopraisingace
14 of 31
15. #FBF Naviyd & URV "LIL MONSTERS"
15 of 31
16. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ONE OF THE BIGGEST LEGENDS IN OUR HIPHOP HISTORY! @snoopdogg CONTINUED BLESSING AND LOVE FAMILY!!!!! REAL OG!
16 of 31
17. Thank you for a beautiful night VSU! Let's do it again! #HOMECOMING
17 of 31
18. Had a great time this morning with my familia Erica, Griff & Truth!!
18 of 31
19. Check out my interview on @essence facebook live. #inmyownwords #nycpromo #day2
19 of 31
20. #She💋 #tbt #TheCoveAtTheAtlantis #DawgPawsAndAll
20 of 31
21. Bae #retailtherapy
21 of 31
22. Why me and @coryhardrict got the same pose... and notee... new mouth #naked
22 of 31
23. When my husband is my personal 'hype-man'! it kills me every time! 💜😂 #WHATNOW #lostfiles📷
23 of 31
24. Diggy Simmons
24 of 31
25. Hand full of @jacquieaiche 💙💎💍 @esnail_la 💅🏾
25 of 31
26. SuperSoulers! You can watch my interview with Carl Lentz live from my Facebook page, tomorrow at 11a ET| 8a PT. #SuperSoulSunday
26 of 31
27. 💋 .. When the friendship is easy like Sunday morning. ☀️
27 of 31
28. Sunday mornings are the best........... hugs and cuddles with my angel
28 of 31
29. #huggar16 #hellohuggars
29 of 31
30. My gym is everywhere!.. #RnBMoney #TheGeneral 📸: @twelvepastseven
30 of 31
31. Nothing I would rather be doing... Rocko setting up our movie, Romelō working on a puzzle & Laiyah singing and sharing all she's learning at school... I'm so grateful for the joy they've brought into my life ... Praying for peace , joy & love in the home of EVERY family ♥️ #HeadScarfPJSunday LOL 😂
31 of 31