The Toledo Mud Stockings joined the American
Association in 1884 after the Northwestern League folded. These
were the days before the professional baseball leagues merged
to form Major League Baseball.
The Mud Stockings are primarily remembered
historically for having Moses Fleetwood Walker on their squad,
thus making him the first African-American to play professional
baseball at the major league level.
Walker suffered a season ending injury
halfway through the 1884 season and his team went out of business.
He later played in the International League in 1887 until Cap
Anson flatly refused to step on the field if Walker played.
Shortly thereafter, both the American Association and the National
League blocked African-Americans from playing professional ball
until Jackie Robinson
broke the color barrier in 1947.