New York: Random House, 1960. First Edition. A distinguished copy of this well-received narrative of Robinson's life, chronicling his early upbringing, career in sports, and his breaking of the color line to become the first African American to play Major League Baseball. Carl Thomas Rowan (1925-2000) was a noted African American journalist and diplomat, whose career in journalism began in 1948 at the Minneapolis Tribune, who hired him as one of only a handful of Black general assignment reporters in the country. "His first major assignment was a series of articles on African American life in the Deep South, for which he traveled six thousand miles in six weeks" (AANB Vol.7, p.20). Throughout the 1950s, he covered the historic Brown vs. Board of Education ruling, and provided extensive coverage of the burgeoning Civil Rights struggle. His reporting of the Montgomery Bus Boycott and his work with Martin Luther King, Jr. and the other boycott leaders would form the basis for his third book, Go South to Sorrow. In 1961, President John F. Kennedy appointed Rowan assistant secretary of state for public affairs, and he would go on to serve as both a U.N. delegate during the Cuban Missile Crisis, as well as the U.S. ambassador to Finland from 1963-64. After serving in government for four years, Rowan signed with Westinghouse Broadcasting, the Chicago Daily News, and the Publishers Newspaper Syndicate, which made him the first syndicated Black columnist in the U.S. – a position he used routinely to draw attention to racial injustice.
Aside from the dedication copy to Rachel Robinson, and the now legendary copy inscribed to Robinson's teammate Pee Wee Reese, we can think of no more significant copy. Smith 18367; Grobani 8-52. Item #6459
First Printing. Octavo (23.5cm); vertically striped paper-covered boards and black cloth backstrip, with titles stamped in red and gilt on spine; red topstain; dustjacket; [viii],,4-339,pp; illus. Inscribed by Robinson to his co-author, Carl T. Rowan, on the front endpaper: "5-25-60 / To Carl with best wishes and thanks for all you did to help [make] "Wait Till Next Year" a success. Your participation helped us very much / Best always / Jackie Robinson." Light wear to extremities, topstain faded, scattered foxing and a few small stains to text edges and endpapers, boards slightly splayed, with the binding a bit loose at the hinges; only Very Good. Dustjacket priced $4.95, with a small clip to lower front flap; moderate external wear, gentle sunning to spine, a few small tears, and scattered foxing (especially to verso, flaps, and rear panel); just Very Good.