WALNUT RIDGE, AR (KAIT) – The Negro League has a rich history, filled with many stories of events and players. Students and staff at Williams Baptist College were treated to a history lesson from someone who lived it.
Tuesday night, Dennis "Bose" Biddle, a former Negro League player, spoke to the group about the "real" history of League.
"I'm here tonight ladies and gentlemen to make sure that you understand that part of history that's swept under the rug," Biddle said.
At the event, Biddle told the crowd how many aspect of baseball came from the Negro League. Biddle said what is known as the hit-and-run in the game, started in the Negro League as the bunt-and-run.
Biddle is the youngest living player in the history of Negro League Baseball. The Magnolia, Arkansas native began his professional career at the age of 17 with the Chicago American Giants.
After two years with the American Giants, he went to the Chicago Cubs. A spring training injury to his ankle ended his baseball career. Biddle went on to attend the University of Wisconsin where he received his bachelor's degree in social work.
"I believe the Lord put me where I was at in the Negro League to be able to stand here today and give you some history," Biddle said.
Biddle now serves as the president of Yesterday's Negro League Baseball Foundation. He said he wants to make sure history is passed down to the young people.
"There are approximately 63 old men still living that played in that league. Thirty of them are 90 or more years old. So our history is just about gone," said Biddle. "My job is to make sure before we are all gone, that the true history is passed down to my young people."
The last major league season for the Negro League was back in the 1950s.
Early that evening, Biddle took time to watch the Williams Baptist baseball team at their practice.