ELSTON AND ME: The Story of the First Black Yankee

Arlene Howard, Author, Ralph Wimbish, With, Yogi Berra, Foreword by with Ralph Wimbish. Missouri Univ. $24.95 (208p) ISBN 978-0-8262-1358-7

Arlene Howard, Elston Howard's widow, details her husband's life from his St. Louis childhood through his untimely death. The book successfully conveys both the respect that Howard commanded from his teammates and his struggles in being the first black member of the Yankees, one of the last teams to integrate because their general manager at the time, George Weiss, "saw no need to integrate a ball club strongly supported by white, upscale fans." Often compared to Jackie Robinson, Howard faced criticism both from racists and from blacks who believed he did not speak out strongly enough against discrimination. The book makes clear that Howard was accepted by his teammates (most notably Yogi Berra), who were apparently not bigoted like Weiss and others in the organization. Surprisingly, and disappointingly, the author focuses primarily on baseball matters and does not really lend much insight into Elston's life off the field. Describing Howard's 1956 "so-so season," she recalls that he was hospitalized "after he broke out in welts. The doctors said they were the result of nerves," but she gives no further explanation. Most of the portraits of Elston as a man come secondhand from players and coaches rather than directly from his wife. The one exception concerns Howard's quest to become the first black manager in the majors; his private thoughts in this endeavor are clearly conveyed. Still, despite its shortcomings, the book is engaging, and Howard's life is interesting enough that it should do well among both Yankee fans and baseball history buffs. 30 b&w photos. (Nov.)

Reviewed on: 10/22/2001
Release date: 11/01/2001
Show other formats
FORMATS
Hardcover - 224 pages - 978-0-8262-6350-6
X
Stay ahead with
Tip Sheet!
Free newsletter: the hottest new books, features and more
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Email Address

Password

Log In Lost Password

PW has integrated its print and digital subscriptions, offering exciting new benefits to subscribers, who are now entitled to both the print edition and the digital editions of PW (online or via our app). For instructions on how to set up your accout for digital access, click here. For more information, click here.

The part of the site you are trying to access is now available to subscribers only. Subscribers: to set up your digital subscription with the new system (if you have not done so already), click here. To subscribe, click here.

Email pw@pubservice.com with questions.

Not Registered? Click here.