November 12, 2014 / by admin / American History / No Comments

Mexican American Baseball in the Pomona Valley (Images of Baseball)

Mexican American Baseball in the Pomona Valley (Images of Baseball)

Language: English

Pages: 128


Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

This volume pays homage to the wonderful teams and players from Azusa, La Verne, Claremont, Pomona, Chino, Cucamonga, Ontario, and Upland. A common thread of all these diverse communities was the establishment of baseball teams and, later, softball teams. Baseball played a critical role in advancing civil and political rights, labor reform, gender equality, educational integration, and cultural legitimacy. These remarkable photographs revive the often-overlooked history of Mexican American baseball in the Greater Pomona Valley.

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often neglected the baseball and softball contributions of Mexican Americans in the United States, with almost no mention of their immense contributions of playing ball in the military. This chapter, the first of its kind ever, takes the first small step to remember and honor those who played the game they loved so much while risking their lives for all of us. 45 Ernie (left) and Manuel Abril (right) once escorted Marilyn Monroe in 1953 during her visit to entertain the troops in Korea. They

Portugal, where he played on a military fast-pitch softball team. The team, Lajes, is seen here at the Military Airlift Command 1970 Softball Championships. (Courtesy of Sam León.) Ramón A. Martínez (first row, second from left) was born in Copeland, Kansas. In 1944, he was assigned to ground crew status as a wing armorer with the 434th Fighter Squadron, 479th Fighter Group, Eighth Air Force. His group was sent to Wattisham Air Force Base in England to begin air operations against Hitler’s

Hernández (no. 9), Stella Hernández Herrington (no. 7), Gayle Saldaña (second row, fourth from left), Rose Hernández Engel (no. 1), and Cookie Saldaña (no. 6). Anglo teams often invited Mexican American women to join the teams because of their incredible talent and teamwork. (Courtesy of Theresa McDowell.) In the early 1970s, a local restaurant sponsored the team El Galleon. The team was comprised of a mixture of women including pitcher Chatta Saldaña Ponce, whose father worked for the Wrigleys

levels. Nearly every community, small or large, had baseball teams representing it. While the rise of baseball as a spectator sport in the Mexican community simply reflected the rise of mass spectator sports in the country, Mexican American baseball, without shame, promoted the sport to reaffirm Mexican heritage and to advance a political agenda. Moreover, teams traveled to nearby communities, crisscrossed county lines, traversed within their respective state borders and across state lines, and

several teams in Arizona, Texas, and California. The mining companies, especially in the copper industry, recruited thousands of Mexicans and Mexican American workers to Arizona. Many of the segregated Mexican American communities established baseball teams. Ernesto is seen here in his Clifton baseball uniform around 1920 with a younger cousin. (Courtesy of Charlie Sierra.) Ernesto Sierra was heavily recruited as a pitcher by other teams in Arizona. He is seen here (standing, center) with

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