Q&A with Neftalie Williams, Research Director of The African American Experience in Major League Baseball Project

Sport in American History

In early October I read an article in the Los Angeles Times about a new oral history project aimed at collecting and preserving the stories of African Americans in Major League Baseball. The project was launched in 2013 by Dr. Daniel Durbin, the Director of the Annenberg Institute of Sport, Media and Society (AISMS) at the University of Southern California. Neftalie Williams, joined the project last September, and currently serves as its Research Director.

Because the project will be of great interest to sport historians, I recently reached out to Williams to learn more. Williams was eager to share his experiences with the project and answer my questions. He was excited to share its progress and goals with our community, particularly after reading Josh Howard’s excellent piece on the Pittsburgh Pirates’ removal of their Negro League heritage from PNC Park. On Tuesday afternoon, we chatted about his experiences…

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