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Which best identifies Jackie Robinson’s reason for writing his letter to President Eisenhower?

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  • August 18, 2023
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  • 8 min read


Jackie Robinson, the first African American to play Major League Baseball, was an athlete and an activist. Learn more about influential figures in sports history at What Impact Did Sinclair’s Book Have on the Era of Progressive Reform. In 1957, he wrote a letter to President Dwight D. Eisenhower, expressing his frustration with the slow progress of civil rights in the United States. This article will examine the reasons behind Robinson’s decision to write the letter to the president and how it impacted the civil rights movement.

Who is Jackie Robinson’s

The first African American to play Major League Baseball in the modern era was a professional American baseball player named Jackie Robinson. When Robinson signed with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1947, he became the first player of color to play in the major leagues. Professional sports at the period frequently practiced racial segregation. He was selected for the Major League Baseball All-Century Team and is a member of both the Pro Football and Baseball Halls of Fame.

Several colleges and universities, like Syracuse University and UCLA, have honored Robinson’s heritage by naming their sports facilities after him. The United States Postal Service has also made a special stamp to honor him.

Robinson’s influence on sports goes beyond what he did as a player. In 1972, President Richard Nixon gave him the Presidential Medal of Freedom for his work as an army general during World War II to fight against racism in the military. After he died at age 53 in 1972, President Gerald Ford had flags raised at half-staff for 30 days in all states and territories of the United States.

Background of letter

Before diving into the reasons behind Robinson’s letter to President Eisenhower, it is essential to understand the historical context of the time. Gain deeper insights at What Was Thomas Paine’s Primary Purpose in Writing The Crisis No. 1. During the 1950s, segregation was still prevalent in the United States, and African Americans fought for equal rights. In 1954, the Supreme Court ruled that segregation in public schools was unconstitutional in Brown v. Board of Education. However, this decision did not end segregation in other areas of American life.

The Reason for the Letter

He wrote a letter to President Eisenhower for more than one reason. Here are the most important ones.

To request support for civil rights

In the first paragraph of his letter, Jackie Robinson says, “I am writing to you today to ask that you use your position as President of the United States to support and help pass a federal civil rights bill.”

Jackie knew that to make progress on civil rights problems, he would need help from the government. He asked President Eisenhower, who had just taken office, to help him.

In the United States in 1957, there was a lot of inequality based on race. In his letter, Jackie says that many black people were prohibited from using public buildings and services because of their race. Explore related issues in From Topic Selection to Outlining: What Should Be the Central Focus in Speech Preparation. Some rules said people had to be separated by race, which stopped everyone from getting the same treatment under the law.

Jackie asked President Eisenhower to help pass civil rights laws that would give African Americans the same rights as white people under federal law. Book writing services specialize in helping authors write and publish their books. These services can include ghostwriting, editing and proofreading, book coaching, and book cover design, among others.

To invite President Eisenhower to attend a baseball game

He wants President Eisenhower to go to a baseball game with him. The Civil Rights Movement is what his invitation is about.

The letter from Robinson was sent to the White House on October 3, 1956. Robinson says in this letter that he wants President Eisenhower to go to a baseball game with him to show support for the Civil Rights Movement. The president was invited to see the Brooklyn Dodgers play at Ebbets Field in New York City on October 15.

To encourage Eisenhower to attend the inauguration of President Kennedy

The letter to President Eisenhower was made as a personal request to get him to go to President Kennedy’s inauguration. Robinson wrote this letter to try to get an invite to the inauguration ball and a chance to meet with Eisenhower. The letter was also made to thank Eisenhower for his support of civil rights, especially in his “Atoms for Peace” speech at the United Nations in 1952.

To protest federal policies that negatively affect people of color

The letter was written to protest federal government policies that hurt people of color. Jackie Robinson wrote his letter to President Eisenhower in response to the Civil Rights Act of 1957. This law protected African Americans’ right to vote and gave them more job possibilities. Robinson was worried that this kind of law wouldn’t do much to help Black people in America with things like desegregation and schooling, which he thought were more important. He thought that the people in Congress who passed the bill didn’t talk about these problems enough, and he wanted Eisenhower to know how he felt about it.

To  thank the president for holding a baseball event at the White House

Jackie Robinson thanked President Eisenhower in a letter for allowing a baseball game to take place at the White House. In his letter, Jackie Robinson talks about how vital it is for people from all walks of life to come together as a country. He also sends his best wishes on this special occasion. He also says that sports are a big part of American society and help unite people. Even though he was no longer a professional player, he thought it was important for him to go to the event.

He wrote to try to get the president to back attempts to make public schools more equal.

The letter was written to get the president to back attempts to integrate public schools. It was also meant to get African Americans to do something. Robinson was tired of America’s racial segregation laws, but he also thought a civil rights movement could succeed if President Eisenhower and other well-known people supported it.

The Impact of the Letter

He was brave when he wrote a letter to President Eisenhower. Robinson was black, and the president of the United States was white, so writing to him was a brave thing to do. It was also brave that the letter talked about something important to African Americans.

Many people, including President Eisenhower, were affected by Robinson’s letter. Before he got the message, President Eisenhower didn’t know that racism against black people was so common in the United States. Before he got Robinson’s letter, he didn’t know about this problem, so he didn’t know how much people would back his efforts to end racial discrimination in America. But when he got Robinson’s letter, President Eisenhower knew that his efforts would have a lot of support and that he needed to do something about this problem right away.

Main Attributes and Elaborate Information

Aspects of Jackie Robinson’s Letter Purpose Behind the Action Impact on the Civil Rights Movement
Request for Civil Rights Support Urging President Eisenhower to use his position to support and pass a federal civil rights bill. Raised awareness and sought governmental intervention in addressing racial inequality and discrimination.
Invitation to Attend a Baseball Game Extending an invitation to the President to attend a baseball game in support of the Civil Rights Movement. Fostered a symbolic alliance between sports and civil rights, garnering attention to the cause.
Encouragement for Eisenhower to Attend Kennedy’s Inauguration Personal request to attend President Kennedy’s inauguration ball and express gratitude for civil rights support. Demonstrated a collaborative effort between influential figures and highlighted the continuity of civil rights advocacy.
Protest Against Federal Policies Voicing concerns about the limitations of the Civil Rights Act of 1957 and the need for broader changes. Drew attention to the inadequacies of existing legislation and pushed for more comprehensive reforms.
Thanksgiving for Baseball Event at White House Expressing gratitude for allowing a baseball game at the White House and emphasizing unity through sports. Strengthened the connection between sports, leadership, and societal unity in the pursuit of civil rights.
Backing Attempts to Integrate Public Schools Writing to garner presidential support for integrating public schools and encouraging African American action. Advocated for educational equality and sought influential support for the broader civil rights movement.
Impact on President Eisenhower Raised awareness about the prevalence of racism and garnered support for efforts against racial discrimination. Prompted President Eisenhower to take action against racial discrimination with newfound awareness and support.


In a letter to President Eisenhower, Jackie Robinson expressed his frustration with the sluggish advancement of civil rights, the controversy surrounding the integration of Little Rock Central High School, and police brutality. His speech significantly impacted the civil rights movement and made African Americans’ struggles in the US more widely known. Explore more about impactful writings at Why Are Dr. Seuss Books So Popular? The Magic of Dr. Seuss’s Best-Selling Books. People are still moved by Robinson’s influence as a social crusader and sports great.

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