This week in Universal News, the All-American Girl Baseball League plays a pre-season game in Alexandria, Virginia. The league operated from 1943 to 1954, and was created to fill stadiums that were left empty when professional baseball players went to war. You probably know about these women baseball players from the 1992 film A League of Their Own. In fact, this Universal News story closely resembles a scene in the movie that shows the fictionalized players performing for a newsreel camera. Dorothy Schroeder, who is shown having her hair braided by teammates, was the only woman to play in every one of the league’s twelve seasons.
From the release sheet:
Lassies Limber Up
Alexandria, VA. The All-American Girl Baseball League greets the spring with a pre-season game between the “Daisies” and the “Belles.” It’s a sockeroo from start to finish.
You may view the complete reel, including stories about General Douglas MacArthur overseeing New York City’s annual Loyalty Day parade, a babysitting school for Dutch college students, and a women’s rodeo, among others, here.
About the Universal Newsreel Collection at NARA:
The Universal Newsreel Collection is one of the most used motion picture collections at the National Archives and Records Administration. Universal Newsreels were shown in movie theaters twice a week, from 1929 until 1967, and covered a wide range of American life and history during that time period. Each release usually contained five to seven stories averaging two minutes in length.
In 1974, Universal deeded its edited newsreel and outtake collection to the United States through the National Archives (NARA), and did not place any copyright restrictions on its use (some stories may contain other underlying intellectual property or proprietary use rights).
While Universal disposed of many of the soundtracks, leaving the newsreels incomplete, supplementary material like scripts, shot lists, and event programs can be found in the production files, available for research at Archives II in College Park, Maryland.