African American History Forum
Interesting Article on Jackie Robinson
Jim Crow, Meet Lieutenant Robinson
A 1944 Court-Martial
by John Vernon
Quarterly of the National Archives & Records Adminstration
Spring 2008 Vol. 40 No 1
"Second Lt. Jack Robinson was beginning to make history, well before 1947, when he became the first person of his race to play in baseball's major leagues.... Robinson had enlisted in the army in April 1942 and was transfered to Fort Hood Texas in early 1944 to an all black unit. His refusal to go to the "back of the bus" and his subsequent court-martial revealed systematic discrimination and mistreatment in the military and foreshadowed the symbolic and social resistance to racial segregation of the later civil rights movement."
The court acquited the defendent of all charges. Robinson's army-appointed defense attorney argued that officers had mishandled his arrest, confronted him with a racially hostile envirnment, and may not have issued clear orders, which left Robinson agitated and confused."
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