Frank Leland

From BR Bullpen

Frank C. Leland

Biographical Information[edit]

Frank Leland was an outfielder with the Chicago Unions in the 1880s. A businessman, Leland returned to baseball in 1901 when he merged the Unions and Columbia Giants to form the Chicago Union Giants, which became the top Negro League team in the midwest. Leland served as manager of the Union Giants as well as owner. The team changed its name to the Leland Giants in 1905; in 1907 Rube Foster replaced Leland as manager and Pete Hill and Foster strengthened the club in the field. A rift between Foster and Leland in 1910 split the team in two; Foster's team won a legal battle over the Leland Giants name, so while Foster ran the team with his name, Leland's club was called the Chicago Giants. This confusion ended in 1911 when Foster's team became the Chicago American Giants. Leland left baseball in a short while later after having been the premier owner and manager in black baseball for decade. Leland was elected to the Cook County Commissioners' Board in 1914, but died later that same year.