A Soldier's Story: Sergeant Spottswood Poles

Born on December 27, 1887, in Winchester, Virginia, the baseball legend Spottswood Poles made his way to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, where he started playing with the Harrisburg Colored Giants in 1906.

Turning professional in 1909 with the Philidelphia Giants, Sergeant Spottswood Poles followed manager Sol White to New York, where he spent most of his career with the New York Lincoln Giants.

Hearing the call of World War I, he took a break from his career to enlist in the U.S. Army and was assigned to the 369th Infantry Regiment, commonly known as the "Harlem Hellfighters." Sergeant Spottswood Poles served honorably, earning five Battle Stars and a Purple Heart.

After the war, Sergeant Spottswood Poles continued to play professionally until 1923, when he retired to work as a taxi cab driver and worked as a civilian at Olmstead Airforce Base.

On September 12, 1962, he died in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, and is buried at Arlington National Cemetary.


a.d. elliott is a wanderer, writer, and photographer currently living in Salem, Virginia. 

In addition to the travel writings at www.takethebackroads.com, you can also read her book reviews at www.riteoffancy.com and US military biographies at www.everydaypatriot.com

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