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Christopher Phelps

revolutionary socialist writer, was born Cyril Lionel Robert James in the village of Caroni on the Caribbean island of Trinidad, a British colony, to Robert Alexander James, a schoolteacher and principal of modest means, and Ida Elizabeth (“Bessie”) James, a devout Anglican and avid reader of English literature. His parents nicknamed him “Nello,” a name later used among friends. His earliest education took place under his strict father in a tiny schoolhouse in North Trace. At age nine James won a scholarship to Queen's Royal College (QRC), the island's best school, in the capital, Port of Spain. At QRC between 1911 and 1918 James indulged his love for the game of cricket and English novels (Thackeray'sVanity Fair was a particular favorite to the detriment of his grades His teachers as had his family impressed upon him the importance of proper manners and fair play ...


Paul A. Frisch

sportswriter, was born in Detroit, Michigan, the son of John Henry Smith, a chef for the industrialist Henry Ford, and Gertrude (Thompson) Smith. He was the only African American student enrolled in Detroit's Southeastern High School and was a member of the school's baseball team. He earned a BS in Education from West Virginia State College, where he played basketball and served as sports editor of the newspaper.

Upon graduation in 1937 he accepted a position at the Pittsburgh Courier, a prominent black weekly newspaper. After only a year he became the sports editor. In addition to covering the Pittsburgh Crawfords and the Homestead Grays, baseball teams in the Negro Leagues, he also reported on the National League's Pittsburgh Pirates, the local white baseball team. Smith used his position to campaign for racial integration, particularly the integration of baseball, which had been segregated since 1884 ...