"Smith contributes to our knowledge of the history of black baseball with this examination of the Negro Leagues in Philadelphia, tracing the rise and fall of teams and leagues through the life of Ed Bolden, a manager, owner and league executive whose career spanned baseball's transition from segregation to integration.”—Amy Essington, California State University, Fullerton
"A story worth reading, and one that will introduce readers to a significant but lesser-known figure in Negro League history, Ed Bolden. Smith weaves Bolden's baseball story both through Philadelphia's African American history and through Negro Leagues history stretching far beyond Philadelphia.”—Leslie Heaphy, editor, Black Ball: A Negro Leagues Journal.
For nearly 40 years, Ed Bolden dominated black baseball in Philadelphia. He owned two teams, the Darby-based Hilldale Club and the Philadelphia Stars, and briefly led the Eastern Colored League, which he founded. Winner of two championships--one with each team--he experienced the highs and lows of the Negro Leagues. He remained with the Stars until his death in 1950, which foreshadowed the dissolution of the Negro Leagues in the face of Major League Baseball's integration. This book examines Bolden's leadership of both teams through economic downturns, racial discrimination and two world wars.