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National Geographic is proud to present this compelling volume, compiled by a who's who of authorities on the subject. Drawing on years of research, Shades of Glory traces the history of black baseball from the 19th century to the first great teams, such as the Cuban Giants, and on to the era of the vibrant barnstorming teams from the East Coast, Chicago, and Cuba. The unparalleled Rube Foster started the first Negro League in 1920, with such dominant teams as the Chicago American Giants and the Kansas City Monarchs. Pittsburgh soon produced two of the greatest teams of all time, the Homestead Grays and the Pittsburgh Crawfords, featuring such stars as Satchel Paige, John Gibson, Cool Papa Bell, and many more. Their superb brand of baseball rivaled the best of the major leagues until the historic signing of Jackie Robinson by the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1947. Shades of Glory chronicles a bygone era of black baseball and the stars who were shadowed by racial prejudice, but now shine forth in all their sparkling brilliance.
At the end of the nineteenth century, cycling's popularity surged in the Boston area, but by 1900, the trend faded. Within the next few decades, automobiles became commonplace and roads were refashioned to serve them. Lorenz J. Finison argues that bicycling witnessed a renaissance in the 1970s as concerns over physical and environmental health coalesced. Whether cyclists hit the roads on their way to work or to work out, went off-road in the mountains or to race via cyclocross and BMX, or took part in charity rides, biking was back in a major way.
Finison traces the city's cycling history, chronicling the activities of environmental and social justice activists, stories of women breaking into male-dominated professions by becoming bike messengers and mechanics, and challenges faced by African American cyclists. Making use of newspaper archives, newly discovered records of local biking organizations, and interviews with Boston-area bicyclists and bike builders, Boston's Twentieth-Century Bicycling Renaissance brings these voices and battles back to life.