Chicago American Giants

One of the truly legendary teams of black baseball the American Giants club was formed in 1911 by Andrew “Rube” Foster. After establishing the American Giants as the premier independent team in the West throughout the 1910s, Foster organized the first viable professional black league, the Negro National League, in 1920 with his American Giants as the cornerstone franchise.

During the 1920s the American Giants won five Negro National League pennants and two Negro World Series championships. After Foster’s death and the collapse of the original Negro National League, the club played the 1932 season in the Negro Southern League and defeated the Nashville Elite Giants in a playoff for that league’s pennant.

Playing as Cole’s American Giants the team entered the newly reformed Negro National League in 1933 and took that league’s inaugural season honors. In 1937 the club, then under the ownership of Memphis baseball kingpin J.B. Martin, joined other western clubs in the newly formed Negro American League. The team would remain in the NAL through the 1950s, a decade after the collapse of the Negro National League and the end of Negro League baseball’s golden era.

From 1920 through 1940 the American Giants played their home games at Shorling Park, a park that dated back to the 1880s and had served as White Sox Park throughout the 1910s. Throughout the 1950s the American Giants called Comiskey Park home.