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Cuban Giants: First African American professional baseball team founded on Long Island

The players on the Cuban Giants were waiters, bellhops, and porters who worked at the Argyle Hotel in Babylon during the summer.

News 12 Staff

Feb 23, 2021, 1:09 PM

Updated 1,239 days ago

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Long Island is known for many things, but many don't know it is the home of America's first Black baseball team.
The players on the Cuban Giants were waiters, bellhops, and porters who worked at the Argyle Hotel in Babylon during the summer. While the players weren't from Babylon, the town gets credit for giving the country its first Black professional baseball team.
“We are very proud that the name Cuban Giants, and Babylon basically appears on the first page of every book about Black baseball,” says Town of Babylon Historian Mary Cascone.
The Cuban Giants weren't just a side show, they were good and they also played white teams, which was almost unheard of at the time.
Today in Argyle Park there is a plaque on a small rock, behind home plate, that marks the birthplace of the first African American professional baseball team. It serves as a reference point for the Black men who played baseball on Long Island more than 100 years ago and made history.
The Cuban Giants are the first historic recognition inductee into the Suffolk Sports Hall of Fame. 


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