Historical African-American Baseball Experience Plays In Tampa

The Tampa-Hillsborough County Public Library System features a new exhibition, "Pride and Passion: The African-American Baseball Experience." The exhibition, running through Feb. 19, examines the story of African-American baseball players in the late 19th century, the formation of their own professional leagues across the country and their quest for equal opportunity.

A ceremony honoring the exhibition's opening will take place at the John F. Germany Public Library on Saturday, Jan. 16, at 2 p.m. Special guests include: Dr. Lawrence Hogan and Dr. Robert Cvornyek, Negro League experts; Kadir Nelson, acclaimed book author/illustrator; Sharon Robinson, daughter of Jackie Robinson; Tampa Bay Rays representatives; and former Negro League Players.

The exhibition will showcase original documents, photos and artifacts from the collections of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, as well as other institutions across the United States. Various libraries within the Tampa-Hillsborough County Public Library System will host their own programs and events to celebrate Pride and Passion, like baseball park food and movie maker, an opportunity to make your own Jackie Robinson Story at Bloomingdale Regional Public Library, and use of the Wii gaming system at South Shore Regional Library and College Hill.

The program utilizing the Wii will provide background information on the 1946 World Series game between the Kansas City Monarchs and Newark Eagles. The names of characters who played in the historic game will be programmed into the gaming system.

"The kids will learn the names of the guys who were playing, learn about their stats, what was going on in the world at that time, and then they're also going to have fun and just play baseball," says Renelda Sells, chief librarian.

Writer: Nancy Vaughn
Source: Renelda Sells, Tampa-Hillsborough County Public Library System
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