New documentary relives Robinson’s spring training game in Daytona Beach


The Halifax Historical Museum in Daytona Beach will commemorate Jackie Robinson’s history-making 1946 spring training game in Daytona Beach with a gala reception and documentary movie premiere.

On March 17, 1946, Robinson played in a spring training baseball game as a member of the Montreal Royals, the Dodger organization’s AAA Minor League team. On that day, the Royals played against the Major League’s Brooklyn Dodgers – the first time a professional baseball game knowingly included an African-American since 1887. The following spring Robinson would break the Major League’s color barrier when he joined the Dodgers.

To commemorate that event, the Halifax Historical Society is hosting a celebration and the premiere of the documentary, “Oral Histories of Jackie Robinson’s 1946 Spring Training.”

March 17 event
It will take place on Thursday, March 17, from 5 to 8 p.m. at the museum, 252 South Beach St.

Free parking will be available in the parking lot off of Magnolia Avenue between Jackie Robinson Ballpark and the Daytona Beach Library. Shuttle service will be available. The Jackie Robinson Ballpark was established during the 1920s as City Island Ball Park.

Consultants for the film were former Daytona Beach NAACP President James Daniels and Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis professor and former Daytona Beach News-Journal reporter Chris Lamb.

Residents interviewed
The 25-minute documentary consists of videotaped interviews with area Black residents who witnessed the 1946 spring training or resided in Daytona Beach when Robinson broke professional baseball’s color line.

The documentary also explores post World War II race relations in Daytona Beach. It features interviews with some Daytona residents.

Funds for the film came from the Florida Humanities Council. Halifax Historical Society and retired professor Leonard Lempel and  award-winning photographer and cinematographer Eric Breitenbach co-produced the documentary.

Tickets for the event are $10.

For more information, call the museum at 386-255-6976.


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