AfriGeneas States Research Forum
[AR] Daltie Cooper of AR; Homestead Grays of PA
Darlton D. Cooper (also known as Darltie or Daltie) played professional baseball on about a dozen Negro League teams, including the Homestead Grays in 1930, according to James A. Riley's The Biographical Encyclopedia of the Negro Baseball Leagues. This team traveled to Hot Springs, Arkansas for spring training.
Daltie Cooper was born near Arkadelphia, AR. In 1920 his family lived near Rufus Battle/Battles in Clark County, AR. Daltie Cooper moved to Pennsylvania to play on the Harrisburg Giants team in 1924.
Daltie had a brother and an uncle whose names resemble Negro League players on Pennsylvania and/or New Jersey teams: Anthony Cooper (Homestead Grays, 1932; Pittsburgh Crawfords, 1933; Newark Dodgers, 1935) and ___ Battles (Harrisburg Giants, 1924). Little is known about this Harrisburg baseball player who could be one of Daltie’s uncles: Rufus or Rupert Battle/Battles.
Rufus Battles/Battle or his twin brother Rupert Battles/Battle could have been on the Harrisburg Giants team in 1924. In 1930, Daltie Cooper and his uncle Rufus Battles/Battle shared a home in Harrisburg, PA. In 1942, Rufus Battles worked for W.E. Chester at the Arlington Hotel in Hot Springs, AR. A photograph of the 1930 Homestead Grays team appears on web pages of Negro League Baseball Players Association, but not all of the players are identified. Could Daltie Cooper be one of them?
Daltie seldom stayed longer than a year or two with any team, but played for several different teams over his career as a pitcher and outfielder: Nashville Elite Giants (1921-22), Indianapolis ABC’s (1923), Baltimore Black Sox (1923, 1931), Washington Potomacs (1924), Harrisburg Giants (1924-27), New York Lincoln Giants (1926), Hilldale Daisies (1928-29, 1932), Homestead Grays (1930), Washington Pilots (1932), Atlantic City Bacharach Giants (1933-34), Newark Eagles (1940). Yet most of Daltie’s years as a professional athlete were spent in Pennsylvania, 1924-1932, or New Jersey, 1933-34 and 1940.