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National Girls Baseball League Collection

Identifier: MSSP 10071

Scope and Contents

The collection contains material related to the Chicago-based National Girls Baseball League, a professional league that rivaled the All American Girls Professional Baseball League. The collection chiefly consists of copies of the official magazine/program of the National Girls Baseball League published under various titles from 1949 to 1953 by Publishers, Inc. (1949) and by Merrell Features (1950-1953). The programs typically contain pictures, biographies, articles, and statistics about the players and the teams in the league. The programs also include information about coaches and administrators, other information about the league, and advertisements. Particularly in 1949 and 1950, the league published several variants of many issues with different players on the cover but with substantially the same inside content. The publication was available on a subscription basis and for purchase at games. Formats include programs, magazines, and ephemera.


  • Creation: 1949 - 1953


Conditions Governing Access

There are no access restrictions on this collection.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright status for collection materials is unknown. Transmission or reproduction of materials protected by U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.) beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Works not in the public domain cannot be commercially exploited without permission of the copyright owners. Responsibility for any use rests exclusively with the user.

Biographical / Historical

The National Girls Baseball League (NGBL) played from 1944 to 1954 and was a rival of the better known All American Girls Professional Baseball League (AAGPBL). Based in the Chicagoland area, the league was originally named the National Girls Softball League but rebranded as the National Girls Baseball league for the 1946 season. The NGBL evolved out of the high-quality amateur Chicago Metropolitan Softball League, which had attracted some of the best women athletes in the country during the 1930s and 1940s.

NGBL founders Emery A. Parichy, a local businessman, Ed Kolski, a 1932 Notre Dame graduate and a local Republican politician, and Charles Bidwill, owner of the Chicago Cardinals football team, had been involved with the Metropolitan Softball League and took their teams professional to compete with the salaries offered by the AAGPBL, which had begun playing in 1943. The two leagues often competed to sign players, but eventually came to an uneasy agreement to respect contracts. Nevertheless, many players switched between the two leagues in different seasons. Despite its name, the NGBL never adopted overhand pitching (like the rival AAGPBL) and instead maintained underhanded pitching throughout its existence; so the sport on the diamond was more akin to modern fastpitch softball.

Unlike the AAGBL, the National Girls Baseball League did not require players to wear skirts on the field, and many teams and players wore shorts. The National Girls Baseball League also allowed a more diverse set of players on the field. Except for some players from Cuba, the AAGPBL employed only white athketes. The National Girls Baseball League, in contrast, fielded at least one African American player, outfielder Betty Chapman, who played for the Music Maids in 1951, as well as Chinese American, Gwen Wong, a pitcher for the Bloomer Girls in 1947, and Japanese American Nancy Ito, shortstop for the Bloomer Girls in 1953.

Franchises in the National Girls Baseball League included the Parichy Bloomer Girls/Wilson-Jones Bloomer Girls (1944-1954), the Chicago Bluebirds (1944-1954), the Chicago Chicks (1944-1948), the Brach Kandy Kids (1944), the Tungsten Sparks (1944-1947), the Rauland Radar Queens/Match Corp Queens/Tony Piet Queens/Alemite Queens (1945-1954), the Rockola Music Maids/Music Maids/Maids (1945-1953), the Chicago Cardinals (1947-1950), the Rockolas/Rockola Chicks (1949-1951), the Thillens Checashers (1951-1952), the Amphenol Belles (1952), and the All-Stars/Chicago Jewels (1954).

The league disbanded after the 1954 season due to decreasing attendance and financial difficulties.


In addition to the plentiful information about the league in the magazines/programs in this collection, the following sources were also helpful in documenting the history of the National Girls Baseball League:

William E. McMahon, Helen E. Nordquist, Merrie A. Fidler, “The International Girls Baseball League,” Baseball Research Journal (Fall 2016):

Bill McMahon, "Alice Kolski,” SABR Biography Project:

Adam Chu, “Their Turn At Bat: National Girls Baseball League” [website]

Jerry Crimmins, “Girls Baseball League Founder Emery A. Parichy,” Chicago Tribune 1992 January 11, D17.


.25 Cubic Feet (1 half document case (letter size).)

Language of Materials


Related Materials

All-American Girls Baseball League Collection (MSSP0014, Rare Books and Special Collections, Hesburgh Libraries, University of Notre Dame)

Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the University of Notre Dame Rare Books & Special Collections Repository

102 Hesburgh Library
Notre Dame IN 46556