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Guide to the West Coast Negro Baseball Association Collection
MS 17  
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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Access
  • Access Restrictions
  • Publication Rights
  • Preferred Citation
  • Acquisition Information
  • Biography / Administrative History
  • Scope and Content of Collection
  • Arrangement
  • Indexing Terms
  • Other Finding Aids

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: West Coast Negro Baseball Association collection
    Dates: 1945-1949
    Collection number: MS 17
    Creator: Harris, Eddie
    Collection Size: .75 linear feet (1 box)
    Repository: African American Museum and Library at Oakland (Oakland, Calif.)
    Oakland, CA 94612
    Abstract: The West Coast Negro Baseball Association was formed on March 9, 1946 at a meeting of the High Marine Social Club at the Elks Clubhouse in Oakland, California. The baseball league was spearheaded by two Berkeley firemen, Eddie Harris and David P. Portlock, who pitched the idea of forming a Negro baseball league on the West Coast that would use Pacific Coast League parks while teams were away. The West Coast Negro Baseball Association Collection includes correspondence, meeting minutes, financial records, by-laws, photographs, and ephemera related to the creation and operation of the West Coast Negro Baseball Association and the Oakland Larks.
    Languages: Languages represented in the collection: English

    Access

    No access restrictions. Collection is open to the public.

    Access Restrictions

    Materials are for use in-library only, non-circulating.

    Publication Rights

    Permission to publish from the West Coast Negro Baseball Association Collection must be obtained from the African American Museum and Library at Oakland.

    Preferred Citation

    West Coast Negro Baseball Association collection, MS 17, African American Museum and Library at Oakland, Oakland Public Library. Oakland, California.

    Acquisition Information

    Collection was donated by Leona M. Brown to the Center for Afro-American History and Life.

    Biography / Administrative History

    The West Coast Negro Baseball Association was formed on March 9, 1946 at a meeting of the High Marine Social Club at the Elks Clubhouse in Oakland, California. The baseball league was spearheaded by two Berkeley firemen, Eddie Harris and David P. Portlock, who pitched the idea of forming a Negro baseball league on the West Coast that would use Pacific Coast League parks while teams were away. Abe Saperstein, founder of the Harlem Globetrotters, was elected president of the association with track star Jessie Owens serving as vice-president, and David Portlock as secretary. The league consisted of six teams: San Francisco Sea Lions, Seattle Steelheads, Portland Rosebuds, Oakland Larks, San Diego Tigers, and Los Angeles White Sox. The league's first official game was between the Oakland Larks and the San Diego Tigers on May 12, 1946 at Fresno Midget Auto Racing Park. The league played only one season, disbanding after the final game in July, 1946, though the Oakland Larks baseball team would continue to play as a barnstorming club through 1947.

    Scope and Content of Collection

    The West Coast Negro Baseball Association Collection includes correspondence, meeting minutes, financial records, by-laws, photographs, and ephemera related to the creation and operation of the West Coast Negro Baseball Association and the Oakland Larks. The collection was assembled by Eddie Harris, co-founder of the West Coast Negro Baseball Association and business manager of the Oakland Larks, and a majority of the collection is correspondence and financial records related to the scheduling of venues and day-to-day operations of the Oakland Larks. Also included in the collection are game day programs, newspaper clippings, and photographs of baseball players on the Oakland Larks, and West Coast Negro Baseball Association by-laws, rules and regulations, and correspondence documenting the establishment of the baseball league.

    Arrangement

    Series I. West Coast Negro Baseball Association Series II. Oakland Larks Baseball Club Series III. Photographs

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
    West Coast Negro Baseball Association--History.
    Oakland Larks (Baseball team)--History.
    Baseball--California--History.
    Negro leagues--History.

    Other Finding Aids

    Richard T. Dobbins Collection, Oakland Museum of California Charlotte Harris Papers, MS 16, African American Museum and Library at Oakland