Walter “Buck” Leonard​

Inducted: 1973
  • Born in Rocky Mount, NC, 1907
  • A power hitter and peerless fielder, Negro League star
  • Left school at 14 to work for Atlantic Coast Line railroad
  • Played semipro ball for Rocky Mount Elks and Black Swans
  • Signed pro contract with Baltimore Stars of Negro National League in 1933
  • Changed clubs several times before signing with Homestead Grays in 1934
  • Played with Grays through 1950, helping the team secure nine league titles from 1937-1945
  • As first baseman, teamed with catcher Josh Gibson to form most feared one-two punch in Negro League history
  • Played in 12 All-star games
  • Played in Mexican leagues in early 1950s
  • Declined offer from St. Louis Browns to play in majors in 1950, but played 10 games for Portsmouth (Piedmont League) in 1953, batting .333
  • VP of Rocky Mount team in Carolina League in 1960s
  • First North Carolinian inducted into National Baseball Hall of Fame
  • Died in 1997