Baseball in Wartime

Baseball's Greatest Sacrifice


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Chuck Harmon

Date and Place of Birth: April 23, 1924 Washington, IN

Baseball Experience: Major League
Position:
Third Base/Outfield

Rank:

Military Unit: US Navy

Area Served: United States

 

After his freshman year at the University of Toledo, Charles B. "Chuck" Harmon served with the Navy at the Great Lakes Naval Training Station, playing on the 1944 Negro Varsity team. Following his discharge in 1945, he returned to the University of Toledo and played baseball and basketball. In 1947, he briefly played for the Negro League Indianapolis Clowns before signing with the St. Louis Browns organization. Harmon made his major league debut with the Reds in April 1954, the team’s first African-American player. He played 289 games in a four-year major league career and continued to play in the minors until 1961. Following his playing career, Harmon worked as a scout with the Cleveland Indians and Atlanta Braves. Later he worked as an administrative assistant for the Hamilton County Court System in Cincinnati, Ohio. In 1977, Harmon was inducted as part of the inaugural class of the University of Toledo Athletic Hall of Fame. He was inducted into the Indiana Baseball Hall of Fame in 1995. In 2015, a statue in his likeness was unveiled in front of Major League Baseball's Urban Youth Academy complex in Cincinnati.

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