On September 17, 1953, Ernie Banks became the first black player to appear in a Cubs game. In his debut, the Cubs faced the Phillies and Banks went one for three and committed one error. His debut was no indication of things to come.
Banks would go on to play for the Cubs from 1953 - 71. "Mr. Cub" won the MVP Award twice (1958 & 59) and ended his career with 512 home runs. These accomplishments are even more impressive when you realize that he did this while playing for a team that only had 6 winning seasons in his 19 years there. It didn't seem to bother Ernie.
"People say I was never with a winner, but what is a winner? I was indeed with a winner because I made lifetime friends on my ball club. I won every time I stepped on to the grass at Wrigley Field because I had such a wonderful relationship with the Cubs players, the fans and all the people of Chicago, the greatest people in the world. Not on a winner? I was on a winner all my life."