Carolyn King was one of the first girls to ever play Little League Baseball, and her struggle began in Ypsilanti. After being selected to play for the Ypsilanti Orioles, Little League International officials threatened to pull Ypsilanti’s charter for allowing a girl to play. The city stood behind Carolyn, and she took the field at Candy Cane Park on May 10th, 1973, amidst wide press coverage and mixed popular opinion. Little League International did in fact pull the Ypsilanti League’s charter, and later in 1973 Carolyn and the City of Ypsilanti sued for alleged discrimination. Though they lost the lawsuit, the Little League dropped its “no girls” rule in 1974, and by 1975 girls were allowed to play Little League Baseball.
For more information on Carolyn King click the links below:
Long after she helped change Little League, Carolyn King’s legacy remains alive and well
An article by Jeff Arnold
The Girl in Centerfield An Educational Documentary about Carolyn King
Vertical Files, General Subjects: Ypsilanti Historical Society.