Indianapolis ABCs

Originally sponsored by the American Brewing Company (hence the team’s name, “ABCs”), the club became a powerhouse in the years leading up to the formation of the Negro National League in 1920. Under the management of C. I. Taylor, one of black baseball’s most fabled strategists, the team regularly contended for national supremacy in independent play. With the formation of the Negro National League in 1920 the ABCs entered organized baseball as a charter franchise.

After contending for the NNL crown during its first three seasons, the club went into rapid decline after Taylor’s death in 1922. After stumbling through a few more seasons with troubles both on the field and in the checkbook, the ABCs disbanded after the 1926 season. In 1931 a new team emerged which bore the “ABCs” name, but the team did not live up to the glory of the original club. Competing variously in the Negro Southern League and Negro American League through much of the 1930s, the team faltered financially before ultimately disbanding as the 1930s came to a close.