Another inning of "Invisible Diamonds"

Kerrville All Stars, c. 1949
© Clifton Fifer

Voices from the Invisible Diamonds

The next inning in ITC’s Negro League Baseball History series

(SAN ANTONIO) - The UTSA Institute of Texan Cultures continues the conversation on Negro League Baseball, Saturday, July 16, 1:30 to 3:30 p.m., with "Voices from the Invisible Diamonds."

The first Invisible Diamonds presentation, held in the spring, garnered the attention of Damion Thomas, PhD, sports curator of Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture. Thomas will give the keynote presentation at the July 16 event, highlighting the role sports played in these players’ communities.

Where the first presentation highlighted some of the places where the African American teams played, and the impact Negro League teams had on their communities, the July event will gather players to tell the stories in their own words.

"Getting the stories first-hand, from the people who played in these leagues and lived these experiences – that’s the treasure and the story we’re here to pass along and preserve," said Greg Garrett, museum educator and researcher for the project. "Sports transcend race and color. What mattered was the skill of the athlete on the field, not the color of the athlete’s skin."

Following Thomas’ presentation, Layton Revel, PhD, founder and director of the Center for Negro League Baseball Research in Carrollton, Texas, will moderate a roundtable discussion between former members of Negro League baseball teams from San Antonio and Kerrville, including:
  • Joseph ‘Lefty’ Vaughns – San Antonio
  • Raymond ‘Red’ Hardee – Kerrville
  • Joe Lewis – Kerrville/Traveling teams
  • Marion Shaw – Kerrville

The event concludes with a question-and-answer session and meet-and-greet with the players and experts.

"This second installment of our Invisible Diamonds programming will allow visitors to meet some of the individuals behind Negro League baseball in Texas," said Garrett. "They will be able to experience the emotion and pride these players felt in the stories and memories they share. We hope that it gives context to baseball as a tool that helped lift up these communities in their quest for social equality."

The Institute of Texan Cultures is located on the UTSA Hemisfair Campus, 801 E. César E. Chávez Blvd., a short distance from the Alamo and the River Walk. The museum will waive standard admission from noon to 5 p.m. on Saturday, July 16. Regular hours are 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Monday-Saturday; noon-5 p.m. For more information, call 210-458-2300 or visit


©2014 Institute of Texan Cultures. University of Texas at San Antonio. All Rights Reserved.


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