How The Washington Post’s Sports section covered D-Day


After The Post published our front page from June 6, 1944, I was curious to see what the Sports page looked like the following day, and whether any of the sports stories mentioned the D-Day invasion. There were two; one summary, and one story about Delaware Park. Here’s the former, an AP dispatch.

D-Day Quiets Sports World on All Fronts

Sport’s tribute to D-Day was the solemnity of almost absolute quiet today in its stadiums and fields.

Only Delaware State Park and Bay Meadows of the larger racing plants operated while the Pacific Coast League was the only baseball circuit among the majors and top minors to do full-scale business.

Fights, including the 10-round affair between Sammy Angott and Ike Williams at Philadelphia, also were set back.

The racing industry, which announced plans to close on D-Day two weeks ago when President Roosevelt suggested that citizens go to their homes and churches on Invasion Day, quickly fell into line.

New York, Chicago, Boston and Detroit turf plants canceled their programs early followed by Pascoag Park in New England, Charles Town in West Virginia, Ascot Park and River Downs in Ohio, Canada’s King’s Park and the Old Country Trotting Association at Westbury, N.Y.

Delaware Park, where the jockeys delayed the start of the first race for 20 minutes by refusing to accept mounts, increased its war bond distribution to horsemen by 50 per cent. Bay Meadows contributed its day’s profits to war charities.

Both scheduled major league contests, night affairs at Pittsburgh and Brooklyn, were switched to other dates. The two games listed in the International League, whose president, Frank Shaugnessy, said he had “two sons over there and I am not much interested in baseball today,” also were postponed.

American Association games at Kansas City, Milwaukee, St. Paul and Minneapolis were called off.

The smaller minors also were dotted with cancellations.

Promoter Herman Taylor said the Angott-Williams bout would be held tomorrow night, weather permitting, in Shibe Park. A Buffalo card also was set back a day. The latter postponement followed orders of Gen. John J. Phelan, New York State Athletic Commission chairman, ordering all EmpireState rings to remain dark tonight.

Dan Steinberg writes about all things DC sports at the DC Sports Bog.
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