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Yom Hashoah: When The Boston Braves Wore Swastikas

Yom Hashoah: When The Boston Braves Wore Swastikas

Associate Editor

Contrary to coventional wisdom, the swastika was far from obscure before the Nazis, and so benign that it was an infrequent but not unknown sports logo even in North America.

Back in 1919, long before the Nazis, the Boston Braves — ancestors of the Atlanta Braves — wore a swastika logo on their baseball cap in a National League game. Here, look closely at the cap of Boston’s Rabbit Maranville. How about wearing THAT on "Turn Back The Clock" day?

Tipped off by ESPN’s Paul Lukas, whose Uni Watch blog is the place to go for uniform talk, there were the Windsor (Novia Scotia) Swastikas of 1909. And here, too! Windsor was quite a swastika hotbed.

And Swastika, Ontario’s baseball team, in the 1920s had a uniform that looked like this. You’ve never driven through Swastika, Ontario?

Of course, in that era we had the Fernie Swastikas, a team for young ladies, in British Columbia, with someone holding this cute souvenir, and the Edmonton Swastikas, and then something must have happened. In the 1930s, you stopped seeing it on sports uniforms and started seeing it in Manhattan. And then in comic books. These days, sometimes I don’t understand but I get it.

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