Segments in this Video

Serving a Larger Cause (04:19)


After years of keeping his promise to Branch Rickey, Robinson used his fame to promote equality. He continued to fight for civil rights long after leaving baseball. (Credits)

"What's Wrong With Negro Baseball? (02:58)

Robinson did not play to his full potential in 1948. That same year he was criticized for an article in "Ebony" magazine.

Finally Speaking Out (02:32)

Robinson challenged players and umpires on the field in 1949. He and other black teammates still showered separately from the other Dodgers.

Paul Robeson (04:18)

In 1949, Robinson testified for the House Un-American Activities Committee at the urging if Rickey. Robeson was being targeted for saying blacks would not fight in a war against the Soviet Union.

"The Jackie Robinson Story" (03:47)

Robinson was voted MVP in 1949. He and Rachel bought a house in a mixed race neighborhood and had a daughter. Rickey was forced off the Dodgers in 1950.

1951 Season (03:03)

Robinson and the Dodgers were doing well, but he was still targeted by racists. Death threats necessitated extra security.

1951 Playoffs (02:16)

The Dodgers faced the Giants in the 1951 Playoffs. Bobby Thompson hit a home run, winning the final game.

Health Issues (02:04)

In 1952, Robinson was diagnosed with diabetes and heart problems. He hit his career best of 19 home runs, but played poorly in the World Series.

"Angry Black Man" Stereotype (02:44)

Robinson accused the Yankees of being prejudiced. He was called insolent and antagonistic for his increasing outspokenness.

Roy Campanella (02:29)

Campanella was pitted against Robinson in the media. The press made an issue of "too many blacks on one team."

Housing Bias in Stanford Connecticut (04:14)

Rachel describes subtle racism in the north as more detrimental than easy to identify behaviors in the South.

1955 World Series (05:25)

Robinson was livid when a Confederate flag was raised at Ebbets Field. The Dodgers finally beat the Yankees.

Small Moments of Greatness (03:30)

On the final day of the 1956 season, Robinson hit a home run and helped the Dodgers win the Pennant only to lose to the Yankees in the World Series.

Robinson Retires (02:33)

In 1956, Robinson was considered to manage the Montreal Royals, instead became vice president of a coffee shop chain in NYC. He was traded to the Giants.

Robinson's Legacy in Baseball (02:17)

Ed Charles was inspired by Robinson to integrate the minor leagues. By 1956, there were black players on most major league teams.

Spingarn Medal (02:42)

The NAACP awarded Robinson its highest honor. In 1957, he began working for Chalk Full o'Nuts and settled into a family routine.

Robinson's Nationally Syndicated Column (02:59)

David, Sharon, and Jackie Jr. were often the only black children in their classes in Stanford, Connecticut. Robinson was a political Independent.

1960 Presidential Candidates (04:21)

Robinson was an Independent and encouraged people to vote on issues, not party labels. He liked Nixon and was skeptical of Kennedy.

Kennedy's Call to Mrs. King (04:09)

Robinson's column was suspended when he began campaigning for Nixon. King was arrested and sentenced to a chain gang.

Jackie Robinson Jr. (03:25)

Rachel took a job as a nurse despite her husband's objections. Jackie Jr. was sent to boarding school and suspended for behavior issues.

Baseball Hall of Fame (02:11)

On July 23, 1962, Robinson was inducted in his first eligible year. His plaque did not mention that he was the first African American in the major leagues.

Mount Olive Baptist Church (02:23)

In 1962, Robinson traveled to Albany, Georgia at the request of Martin Luther King Jr. He visited the site of a burned down church in Sasser, Georgia.

Violence in Birmingham, Alabama (02:58)

In 1963, Bull Conner ordered the police to use attack dogs and fire hoses against peaceful protesters pushing for desegregation. Robinson raised bail money.

Freedom Now Movement (02:20)

On August 28, 1963, the Robinson family went to Washington D.C. Sharon and David recall the day of peaceful protest.

Malcolm X (01:58)

Violence was escalating as the Civil Rights Movement progressed. Robinson helped organize a rally in Harlem after the church bombing in Birmingham.

1964 GOP Candidates (03:51)

JFK pushed for a civil rights bill in the months before he was assassinated. Barry Goldwater knew Republicans would not get the black vote.

New Republican Extremism (02:42)

Goldwater received the GOP nomination in 1964; Robinson openly called him a bigot. Black delegates were threatened. Johnson was elected in a landslide.

Pushing Economic Development (02:59)

Robinson opposed all violence and denounced Malcolm X as a militant. In 1964, he helped found Freedom National Bank.

Vietnam War (01:46)

Jackie Jr. joined the Army and went to Vietnam. He was wounded in combat and became addicted to heroin.

Black Power Movement (03:10)

Robinson did not support the Black Panthers. Riots broke out in 1967 in protest of police brutality. Robinson was called an "Uncle Tom" for working for Rockefeller.

New Black Masculinity (02:44)

Black people were dissatisfied with integration. Muhammad Ali spoke out against the Vietnam War. Robinson criticized militants and the NAACP.

Troubles in 1968 (03:26)

Over the course of one year Jackie Jr. was arrested, Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated, Robinson's mother died, and he had a heart attack. Nixon was elected president.

June 17, 1971 (04:40)

In 1969, Rachel took a leave of absence due to Robinson's declining health. Jackie Jr. was sober and doing well when he died in a car wreck.

Final Days (02:12)

Robinson's health was deteriorating. He threw the first pitch at the 1972 World Series. He would not be satisfied until there was a black manager.

Robinson's Death (03:03)

Robinson had a heart attack and died on October 24, 1972. Over 2,000 people attended his funeral.

Robinson's Legacy (01:40)

Through baseball, Robinson changed how America thought about race.

Credits: Ken Burns: Jackie Robinson, Part 2 (03:04)

Credits: Ken Burns: Jackie Robinson, Part 2

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Robinson uses his fame to speak out against injustice, alienating many who had once lauded him for “turning the other cheek.” After baseball, he seeks ways to fight inequality, but as he faces a crippling illness, he struggles to remain relevant.

Length: 114 minutes

Item#: BVL129891

Copyright date: ©2016

Closed Captioned

Reviews & Awards

Part 2

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