The Holly Springs Salamanders got to play a role in saluting the historic Negro League team that once played near Ting Stadium on Juneteenth. On Saturday, June 19, 2021, the Holly Springs Martin Luther King Jr. Committee, in conjunction with the Salamanders, the Town of Holly Springs and UNC Rex Health unveiled and dedicated a plaque honoring the local Negro League team, The Athletics.
The plaque is located outside the ticket window. A special unveiling took place at 5:30pm before the Salamanders game. In part, it reads:
“For all the players who participated in the league from the 1940s to the 1970s and all their families and fans who came to support them, we dedicate this plaque in your honor. May their commitment to the game of baseball and the Town of Holly Springs always be remembered.”
Three former Holly Springs Athletics players James Kelso Adams, Mayfield Woodard, and Clyde Cofield were on hand for the dedication and were also acknowledged during the Salamanders game.
Thanks to HSS’ Chip Hutchinson & HSS’ Harrison Rogers for this Capcom scoop & for these Capcom photos & videos.
SLIDESHOW: Dedication of a Plaque in Honor of the Historic Negro League’s The Holly Springs Athletics
The full text of the plaque:
For decades, the Black communities of Holly Springs and surrounding towns would gather at a nearby field to play and watch baseball during the baseball season. During racial segregation, it was against the law for Black and White teams to compete. As a result, the local Negro Baseball League was formed. Baseball became an important social event for the area, and our very own Holly Springs Athletics team was a key host and formidable team that captured many wins and fans during their years play. Other teams that participated included teams from Fuquay-Varina, Apex, Morrisville and surrounding communities. While that baseball field is long gone and many of the players have passed on, we cherish the memories of those days gone by.
For all the players who participated in the league from the 1940s to the 1970s and all their families and fans who came to support them, we dedicate this plaque in your honor. May their commitment to the game of baseball and the Town of Holly Springs always be remembered.
–Holly Springs Martin Luther King Jr. Committee, Inc.