Monte Irvin quote: “the only thing a black youth could aspire to be was a bellboy”

By

“I was all-state in four sports in New Jersey, but sometimes I couldn’t get served at a restaurant two blocks from my high school. There were no job opportunities then… the only thing a black youth could aspire to be was a bellboy or a pullman or an elevator operator, or, maybe, a teacher. There was a time when all we had was black baseball.”

– Monte Irvin, baseball star in the Negro League and then in the MLB

Vintage photograph of Monte Irvin, a professional baseball player, wearing a white jersey with dark sleeves. He is smiling and leaning on a bat, with a blurred stadium background suggesting a casual moment at the ballpark.
Monte Irvin

Notes:

  • Please consider supporting Historical Snapshots with a donation if you enjoyed this Monte Irvin quote. Visit our Patreon page to donate. Thank you for supporting us.

“Monte Irvin: ‘the only thing a black youth could aspire to be was a bellboy’” source: Photograph of Monte taken circa 1953 –¬†Wikimedia Commons, Wikimedia Foundation, https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Monte_Irvin_1953.jpg.