Jackie Robinson: Breaking the Racial Barriers Essay

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Jackie Robinson: Breaking the Racial Barriers

On July 23, 1962, in the charming village of Cooperstown, New York, four new members were inducted into baseball’s Hall of Fame. As they gathered around the wooden platform, the fans reminisced about America’s national pastime. Edd Roush and Bill McKechnie, sixty-eight and seventy-four years old respectively, were two of the inductees that day (Robinson 142). They were old-timers chosen by the veterans’ committee. Bob Feller and Jackie Robinson, both forty-two, were youngsters by comparison. According to the rules of the Hall of Fame, a player must be retired for five years before he can be considered for induction. Both Feller and Robinson were elected in the first year they were
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Only six months after Jackie was born his father deserted the family. This led to several hardships. The family lived on a sharecropper’s farm until the plantation owner used the father’s leave as an excuse to keep the whole crop the family had raised and to evict the widow and her children (54). Jackie’s mother gathered her young ones about her with bitter feelings and found work as a domestic servant.

About a year later, Robinson’s uncle came to visit. He had served in the first World War. Afterward he had settled in California. When he returned to visit his family in Georgia, they scarcely recognized him, because he was dressed so finely (Mann 57). Once he learned of their troubles, he was immediately convinced that his sister and her children would do better in California. Within a few days, she boarded a train with her five little ones.
They arrived in Pasadena toward the end of May, 1920, and moved into tight quarters with her sister and brother-in-law, brother, a nephew and her husband’s cousin (Robinson 79). Though they lacked hot water and a kitchen sink, Pasadena seemed glorious with it’s blue hills on the horizon and it’s wonderful air. Mrs. Robinson accepted a job doing housework while the Welfare Department provided clothing for the children (80).

Mrs. Robinson soon found employment at which she could earn enough money to consider a more ample living space. They found a house on Pepper Street, however,

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