RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - The Richmond Professional Baseball organization has dropped the name "Hambones" from consideration for the name of the new franchise after complaints from the Richmond chapter of the NAACP.
The following is Richmond Professional Baseball's statement regarding the press conference held this afternoon at The Diamond:
"Richmond Professional Baseball has removed the term Hambones from consideration for the name of the new franchise returning baseball to Richmond. The name was chosen from submissions made to the Richmond Times-Dispatch, and our sole intent was to utilize the concept of Virgina Ham and its history in the region. We were honestly unaware of any negative, derogatory, or offensive connotations. Our organization in no way intended to offend any individual or segment of society with its inclusion in our name the team contest. We offer a sincere apology to those that may have been offended by our mistake. We continue to build towards the exciting return of baseball to this great city and look forward to groundbreaking days ahead as the identity of the team takes shape."
The Juba dance or hambone, originally known as Pattin' Juba, is a style of dance that involves stomping as well as slapping and patting the arms, legs, chest, and cheeks. It is similar to clogging and the jig, and "pattin' Juba" would be used to keep time for other dances during a walkaround. [Wikipedia]