Unit 3

Events

First Blacks in Pro Baseball

1884

Moses Fleetwood Walker and his brother, Welday, become the first Blacks to play in pro baseball as members of the Toledo Blue Stockings of the American Association

First Blacks in Pro Golf

1896

John Shippen played in the second ever U.S. open at Shinnecock Hills, and played in the Open 6 more times through 1913

First Blacks in Pro Football

1904

Charles Follis played for the Shelby Blues in 1904, making him the first black to appear in a professional football game

First Blacks in Pro Boxing

1908

Jack Johnson, the son of former slaves, was the first black to fight for the world heavyweight title when he had a bought against Canadian Tommy Burns

More Blacks in Pro Baseball

1946

Jackie Robinson is best credited for breaking the sports color barrier when he became an everyday starter for the Brooklyn Dodgers

First Blacks in Pro Tennis

1950

Althea Gibson became the first Black, male or female, to compete in a major tennis tournament when she competed in the U.S. Championship

First Blacks in Pro Basketball

1950

Chuck Cooper became the first black player drafted into the NBA in 1950 when the Boston Celtics took him in the 2nd round, and he was soon joined by Earl Lloyd in the 8th round. Nat Clifton became the first black player signed to a contract the same year, but Lloyd would become the first black to appear in a game

First Blacks in Pro Hockey

1958

Willie O'Ree became the first black to play in a pro hockey game as a member of the Boston Bruins. He became a more full time player in 1960

More Blacks in Pro Golf

1961

Charlie Sifford became the first black to get full time PGA Tour playing privileges

More Blacks in Pro Basketball

1966

The Texas Western Men's Basketball team was the first to start 5 black players in an NCAA Tournament game, in which they defeated future NBA legend Pat Riley and the Kentucky Wildcats, who were all white

More Blacks in Pro Tennis

1975

Arthur Ashe became the first black man to win Wimbledon

Blacks win across the board

2016

In the NBA, NFL and MLB, the championship winning teams all had at least one black member to play significant roles on their respective teams