Whirty: The Cuban Giants meet Louis Sockalexis

From SABR member Ryan Whirty at Home Plate Don’t Move on September 16, 2019:

I’ve talked before about how I have family roots in central Maine, way up in the woods, and I’ve written a few Maine-centric posts on Home Plate Don’t Move, such as here.

However, in addition to a natural affinity for all things Pine Tree State, I also enjoy dipping into Native-American history when I can (including when that history intersects with the Negro Leagues, such as here and here), and the combination of those two interests led me to recently purchase and read Brian McDonald’s book, “Indian Summer,” a biography of Maine native Louis Sockalexis, the first acknowledged Native-American to play in major league baseball.

(Research has recently found evidence that the honor of first American Indian to play in the majors was Jim Toy, a Pennsylvania native who competed for a couple major league teams between 1887 and 1890, but who apparently “passed” as white and as such wasn’t recognized as a Native-American during his career).

Sockalexis was a member of the Penobscot tribe, a relatively small group located in Old Town, Maine, a small island community nestled between two rivers and located just north of Orono, which is the home of the University of Maine.

Read the full article here: https://homeplatedontmove.wordpress.com/2019/09/16/the-cuban-giants-meet-louis-sockalexis/

Originally published: September 16, 2019. Last Updated: September 16, 2019.