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Elston Howard Autographs, Memorabilia & Collectibles

ELSTON HOWARD
Born: February 23, 1929 in St. Louis, Missouri
Died: December 14, 1980 in New York City, New York
Player Career
Bat: Right Throw: Right Height: 6' 2" Weight: 196
First Game: April 14, 1955 ; Final Game: September 29, 1968
Awards and Achievements
Named AL Most Valuable Player by Baseball Writers' Association of America (1963)
Named catcher on The Sporting News AL All-Star Team (1961 and 1963 to 1964)
Won AL Gold Glove as catcher (1963 to 1964)
Biography | show moreshow less
Elston Howard This article was written by Cecilia Tan and is presented in part, courtesy of the Society for American Baseball Research Elston Howard was born February 23, 1929, in St. Louis, Missouri, the son of Emmaline Webb and Travis Howard. A schoolteacher in Sikeston, Missouri, Emmaline fled to St. Louis when Howard, her principal, refused to marry her. She worked to become a dietician, and when Elston was 5 years old, she married Wayman "Big Poppy" Hill. Elston attended the Toussaint L'Ouverture school as well as the Mt. Zion Baptist Church. The church's pastor, the Reverend Jeremiah M. Baker, became Elston's godfather, and the boy was raised to work hard and eat right (thanks to his mother's dietician's know-how).In the summer of 1945, Howard, then 16, was playing baseball in a sandlot when Frank Tetnus "Teannie" Edwards approached him. "The biggest kid on the field was hitting the ball so hard and far that it made Teannie mad," wrote Arlene Howard in her book Elston and Me. "When he got to the field he found out that the big kid was, in fact, one of the youngest on the lot." Edwards, a former Negro Leagues player himself, helped run the St. Louis Braves and he wanted Elston. Convincing Emmaline was the hardest part. Edwards had to promise that young Elston would eat properly. On Easter Sunday 1946 (April 21), Howard debuted in the Tandy League1, catching in a game against Kinloch. He had two hits and threw out two runners trying to steal second in a 5-4 loss.The following year, Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier in the Major Leagues. Now 18, Howard was working at Bauer's grocery store and finishing at all-black Vashon High School. After Robinson's debut, Vashon hastily formed a baseball team. Elston was already a star athlete at Vashon, playing football, running track, and making all-state in basketball. He was easily the best player in baseball, as well, and after graduating from Vashon, he played another summer with the Braves.
Film Credits | show moreshow less

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