Seattle Central Little League History
The history of Seattle Central Little League traces back to an organization called the "International Little League". It was started by Mr. Isaiah Edwards, and covered the area from the ship canal to the north, all the way down to Tukwila. At the time, Mr. Edwards recruited kids by driving a pickup truck through neighborhoods with a bullhorn, telling all the kids to join the baseball fun. The International Little League had as many as 1200 kids playing baseball in Seattle. The league eventually became "Seattle Little League" and was later renamed to "Seattle Central Little League" to avoid confusion with other Little Leagues in the Seattle area.
Garfield Playfield was a significant location for baseball over the years, particularly for African-American baseball, including barnstorming Negro League teams. Several stars grew up playing baseball at Garfield, including Bill North, Joe Staton and Cornell Archie, to name a few. Bill North, a Garfield HS graduate, played on the World Series-winning Oakland A's teams of the 70's, alongside Reggie Jackson. Joe Staton, also Garfield HS graduate, made it to the Major Leagues and played for the Detroit Tigers. Mr. Staton is still actively involved locally with the Central Area Youth Association and RBI Baseball (sponsored by the Seattle Mariners). Cornell Archie played catcher at the University of Washington, and was narrowly beat out by Ron Cey for the NCAA MVP. Mr. Archie became a VP at Washington Mutual Bank.
Negro League Team Names
To honor Garfield Playfield's historic connection to Negro League baseball and the local African-American baseball community, then-President Wayne Dervin introduced Negro League team names to SCLL in the late 1990's. Since then, SCLL teams have carried the NL team name legacy forward. Past President Alex Korahais researched the NL team histories to ensure the SCLL uniforms had the correct colors, that SCLL was using the most significant NL teams, and also created the team history documentation that team members receive to welcome them to their team. The NL team names in SCLL carry the legacy of Garfield Playfield forward for our younger generations.