Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Journeys of Discovery: The women who saved baseball during World War II

Correspondent Katya Cengel reports from Rockford, Illinois, where she visits with two women who played baseball for the Rockford Peaches during WW II—chronicled in the Hollywood hit "A League of Their Own."

When the men were away fighting during World War II, the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League relied on women to keep the game of baseball alive.

It all began in Rockford, Illinois with the Rockford Peaches. Throughout the war, the league’s inaugural team The Peaches notched the most league championships.

Rockford Peaches Maybelle Blair, 91, and Shirley Burkovich, 85, recall their baseball days as a young generation of female athletes participated in this summer’s national Baseball For All tournament.

Correspondent Katya Cengel, author of "Bluegrass Baseball—A Year in the Minor League Life," is an adjunct professor of journalism at Cal Poly State University in San Luis Obispo.

You are invited to subscribe to the Lowell Thomas Award-winning travel show podcast, Journeys of Discovery with Tom Wilmer, featured on the NPR Podcast DirectoryApple Podcast, the NPR One App & Twitter: TomCWilmer. Instagram: Thomas.Wilmer. Member of the National Press Club in Washington D.C. Underwriting support provided by The Society of St. Vincent de Paul.

Related Content