Thursday, February 19, 2009

Jackie Robinson

Jack Roosevelt "Jackie" Robinson (January 31, 1919 – October 24, 1972) was the first African-American Major League Baseball player of the modern era.[2] Although not the first African-American professional baseball player in United States history, Robinson's 1947 Major League debut with the Brooklyn Dodgers ended approximately 60 years of baseball segregation, breaking the baseball color line, or color barrier.[3] At that time in the United States, many white people believed that blacks and whites should be kept apart in many aspects of life, including sports.[4] Despite this obstacle, Robinson went on to have an exceptional baseball career. Robinson played on six World Series teams and was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1962. He earned six consecutive All-Star Game nominations and won several awards during his career. In 1947, Jackie won The Sporting News Rookie of the Year Award and the first MLB Rookie of the Year Award. Two years later, he won the National League MVP Award—the first black player to do so.[5] On April 15, 1997, the 50-year anniversary of his debut, Major League Baseball retired Robinson's jersey number 42 across all MLB teams in recognition of his accomplishments in a ceremony at Shea Stadium.[6] He also had success away from the baseball field. Robinson was the first African-American Major League Baseball analyst and the first black vice president of a major American corporation.[7] In the 1960s, he helped to establish the Freedom National Bank, an African-American owned and controlled entity based in Harlem, New York.[8] Due to his achievements, Robinson was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom and the Congressional Gold Medal.[7][9] In 1950, he played himself in the biographical film The Jackie Robinson Story.[10] In 1946, Robinson married Rachel Annetta Isum,[11] and after Robinson died of a heart attack in 1972, she founded the Jackie Robinson Foundation.[12][13] Courtesy of :

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