HOMESTEAD (KDKA) — They were pioneers who didn’t always get their due, but now there is a new honor for members of the Homestead Grays and Pittsburgh Crawfords.
Eighteen new signs were unveiled Thursday on the Homestead Grays Bridge to honor great players from the Grays and Crawfords of the Negro League Baseball teams.
“When you come across the bridge into Homestead, you know where they were, where it all started,” said Betty Esper, the mayor of Homestead. “I just feel that a lot of the black ball players wouldn’t be where they are if it weren’t for the Homestead Grays.”
More than half century later, Levi Brown plays on a softball team with the same name on the Grays’ old field.
“I come to learn and hear about Mr. Gibson and the Pittsburgh Crawfords, and the guys that I follow behind,” said Brown.
West Field in Munhall maybe looks a little rough around the edges now, but it was once home of Negro League Baseball. Josh Gibson played on that field.
Now, for the family members of those former players, having signs on the bridge means the world to them.
“So much traffic comes across this bridge with all the people coming to The Waterfront,” said Sean Gibson, the great grandson of the baseball great. “For people who don’t know about Josh Gibson or the Negro League players, it gives them a chance to see these banners and then maybe go home and do some research.”