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Need an introduction to the Negro Baseball Leagues? For those who are just discovering the story of the Negro League baseball we have prepared a primer on this fascinating part of American sports and cultural history. More...
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Question: Why did the Negro Leagues disappear?


After the integration of professional baseball two factors combined to bring about the collapse of the Negro Leagues–(a) the best players from the top Negro League teams were signed by Major League organizations, thus weakening the top Negro League teams, and (b) the interest of black fans was quickly drawn away from the Negro Leagues as they focused their interest on the performance of Jackie Robinson and other black pioneers in the major leagues. As fan attendance dwindled at the close of the 1940s, most Negro League teams collapsed under financial pressure.

Although the integration of professional baseball was one important step in the integration of American society, the event did have at least one negative aspect for the African-American community. By the 1940s Negro League baseball had become one of the largest and most successful black-owned business enterprises in America. The integration of baseball meant the end of baseball as a profitable industry in the black community.

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