During the Great Depression, out in drought stricken North Dakota, one of the most improbable teams in the history of baseball was put together by one of the sport's most unlikely champions. In Bismarck, a decade before Jackie Robinson broke into the Major Leagues, car dealer Neil Churchill signed the best players he could find, regardless of race, and fielded an integrated squad that took on all comers in spectacular fashion.
Color Blind, from award-winning journalist Tom Dunkel, tells this remarkable, largely forgotten story. When baseball swept America in the years after the Civil War, independent, semi-pro, and municipal leagues sprouted up everywhere. Color Blind immerses the reader in the wild and wonderful world of independent baseball, with its tough competition and its novelty - from all-brother teams and a prison team (who only played home games, naturally) to one from a religious commune that sported Old Testament beards.
Dunkel traces the rise of the Bismarck squad, and follows them through their ups and downs, focusing on the 1935 season, and the first National Semi-Pro Tournament in Wichita, Kansas. This is an entertaining, must-listen audiobook for anyone interested in the history of baseball.