Cleveland Indians will remove Chief Wahoo logo in 2019
Chief Wahoo is history. In a statement, baseball commissioner Rob Manfred said he told Paul Dolan, the team’s chairman, that it was time to mothball the cartoonish caricature that has appeared on Indians’ uniforms since 1948.
Chief Wahoo is history.
The Cleveland Indians will remove the logo that many Native Americans find racist from its baseball caps and jerseys starting in the 2019 season, Major League Baseball announced Monday.
In a statement, baseball commissioner Rob Manfred said he told Paul Dolan, the team’s chairman, that it was time to mothball the cartoonish caricature that has appeared on Indians’ uniforms since 1948.
“Over the past year, we encouraged dialogue with the Indians organization about the club's use of the Chief Wahoo logo,” Manfred said. “During our constructive conversations, Paul Dolan made clear that there are fans who have a longstanding attachment to the logo and its place in the history of the team.
"Nonetheless, the club ultimately agreed with my position that the logo is no longer appropriate for on-field use in Major League Baseball, and I appreciate Mr. Dolan's acknowledgement that removing it from the on-field uniform by the start of the 2019 season is the right course."
The move comes after years of home opener protests outside Progressive Field in downtown Cleveland by angry Native Americans and their supporters. Those protests were often met by jeers from Indians fans who cherish the Chief Wahoo logo.
But the chief was on his way out even before Monday’s announcement. The Indians introduced a "C'' insignia on some of their baseball caps and removed signs with the Wahoo image from the ball field.
In recent years, many schools and universities have ceased using Native American nicknames. The Washington Redskins, however, have continued to resist demands that the team change its name. And last year the Supreme Court, in a ruling, cleared the way for the Redskins to keep hanging onto their logo.
This is a developing story, please check back for updates.