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Back cover of Jackie Robinson Comic Book, 1951.
Back cover of Jackie Robinson comic book, 1951

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Jackie Robinson Breaks the Color Barrier
In 1945, baseball policies separating black and white players changed forever when Brooklyn Dodgers general manager Branch Rickey signed a contract with Jackie Robinson that would bring him into the major leagues. Rickey, who called the move baseball's "great experiment," knew that the player chosen to cross the "color line" would have to be a strong individual, able to stand up to intense public observation and also be able to avoid confrontation even when met with insults and hostility. Jackie Robinson was an excellent athlete. In college, he competed in baseball, football, basketball, and track. He was also involved in civil rights and he had served in the Army. On October 23, 1945, Robinson officially signed his contract with the Dodgers. After a year on a minor league team to sharpen his skills, he put on his first Dodgers uniform (number 42) in April 1947.
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