25 Photos of Jackie Robinson, Famed Baseball Player and Champion of Civil Rights

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Jackie Robinson was the first African American to play in Major League Baseball. Robinson broke the color barrier on April 15, 1949, as the Brooklyn Dodgers first basemen. Robinson playing for the Dodgers signified the end of racial segregation in professional baseball that had relegated African Americans to the Negro Leagues since the 1880s.

Robinson had a stellar career in the MLB. He earned the Rookie of the Year Award in 1947, he was an All-Star for six consecutive seasons from 1949-1954, and won the National League Most Valuable Player Award in 1949. With the Dodgers, Robinson also played in six World Series and lead the Dodgers to win the championship in 1955.

Jackie Robinson was also a very active proponent of the Civil Rights Movement as a cultural icon. Robinson was not only the first African American MLB player, but was also the first African American television MLB analyst, the first African vice president of a major American corporation, Chock full o’Nuts. Robinson also helped establish the Freedom National Bank, an African American owned bank based in Harlem, NY.

After his death in 1972, Jackie Robinson was posthumously awarded the Congressional Gold Medal and the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Jackie Robinson served as a Second Lieutenant with the United States Army. In 1942, Robinson was drafted and sent to a segregated unit in Kansas. nydailynews
Jackie Robinson, in military uniform, signs a contract with the minor league farm team of the Brooklyn Dodgers. biography
Jackie Robinson, star rookie first baseman of the Brooklyn Dodgers baseball team, signs his 1948 contract in the presence of the Club’s President Branch Rickey, on Lincoln’s birthday. Robinson, the first African American ever to play in the MLB. Getty
Jackie Robinson, Brooklyn Dodgers, 1954. Wikipedia
American baseball player Jackie Robinson (1919 – 1972) of the Brooklyn Dodgers in action sliding past the other players towards home plate during a baseball game, 1948. Jackie Robinson Foundation
Members of the Brooklyn Dodgers pose in front of their dugout before an exhibition game with the New York Yankees. biography
Heavyweight champion Joe Louis (left) and Jackie Robinson (right) meet in Pompoton Lakes, NJ. biography.
Members of the 1947 Brooklyn Dodgers pose for a team photograph at Ebbets Field. Sept. 20, 1947. newsday
Jackie Robinson steals home plate against Yogi Berra during Game 1 of the 1955 World Series. Sports Illustrated
Jackie and Rachel Robinson with Jackie Jr. and infant Sharon in 1950. biography
Jackie Robinson teaching his son how to bat, 1951. biography
The Brooklyn Dodgers are greeted by fans as they arrive at LaGuardia Airport. Sept. 23, 1949. AP
Jackie Robinson signs autographs for fans in the stands during Dodgers’ spring training in the Dominican Republic. March 6, 1948. newsday
Jackie Robinson becomes the first African American to win the Most Valuable Player award. biography
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