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Paul Stillwell

pioneer black naval officer, was born in Oberlin, Ohio, one of five children (two boys and three girls) of James and Margaret Barnes. James, from North Carolina, was a chef at Oberlin College, and Margaret, from Kentucky, ran a family laundry. Soon after they married, Barnes's parents settled in Oberlin to raise their family because of the community's liberal atmosphere. They were aware of the role the town had played as a way station on the Underground Railroad for fugitive slaves in the nineteenth century. Barnes received the bulk of his education in Oberlin. He graduated from high school there in 1932 and was elected to the National Honor Society. In 1936 he graduated from Oberlin College with a bachelor s degree in Physical Education He was an outstanding athlete who played end on the college s football team and starred on the track team He established a ...


Gerald Early

baseball player and artist, was born Curtis Charles Flood in Houston, Texas, the youngest of six children of Herman and Laura Flood. In 1940 the family moved to Oakland, California. Flood's older brother, Carl, who had trouble with the law from childhood, slipped into a life of crime. Flood, however, began playing midget-league baseball at the age of nine. George Powles coached the team and produced, besides Curt Flood, such players as Frank Robinson, Vada Pinson, Joe Morgan, and Jesse Gonder. The other factor that kept Flood out of trouble was encountering Jim Chambers who encouraged his interest and development as an artist at Herbert Hoover High School in Oakland Flood played baseball throughout his teenage years and became a promising athlete However he was small weighing barely one hundred forty pounds and standing only five feet seven inches tall as a senior in ...


Michelle K. Massie

photojournalist, was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, the youngest of three sons of William A. and Ella Mae (Taliaferro) Harris. His parents operated the Masio Hotel on Wylie Avenue in Pittsburgh's famed Hill District neighborhood. During the early twentieth century, the Hill District was the mecca of African American life in Pittsburgh. The neighborhood attracted poor and working-class blacks as well as the elites of the sports and entertainment worlds, for it was an area where blacks freely socialized, shopped, worshipped, owned businesses, and lived without having to confront many of the harsh realities of the segregated city. It was this exposure to the richness of black life that influenced Harris's forty-year career as a photojournalist and portrait photographer.

Harris got his nickname at the age of two from a female relative who called him Teenie Little Lover It was later shortened to Teenie Harris came of age during ...


George Lewis

athlete, photographer, and poet, was born Gilbert Heron in Kingstown, Jamaica. Though he was a talented photographer, particularly of sporting events, and a notable poet, publishing a collection entitled I Shall Wish Just for You as late as 1992, Heron's fame derives from neither. He remains best known as a pioneering nonwhite sportsman in the United Kingdom in the 1950s and as father to the eclectic, prolific, and hugely influential jazz musician and wordsmith Gil Scott-Heron.

Heron came to attention as an association football or soccer player for the Detroit Corinthians although he had previously turned out for the Canadian Air Force Detroit Wolverines and Chicago Sting Standing just below five feet ten inches and weighing just under 178 pounds Heron had the speed and agility that gave him the perfect characteristics for football s target man and goal scorer the center forward In the ...


Bill Bollendorf

was born on 7 December 1973 in a makeshift house off the Gran Rue, Port-au-Prince, Haiti’s most important commercial thoroughfare, and grew up there alongside his grandmother, his parents, six sisters, and four brothers. Nicknamed “Guyodo,” he attended primary and secondary school in Port-au-Prince, and also worked after school sanding wooden souvenirs.

Like many children in his neighborhood, Guyodo played soccer from a very early age. Some children, too poor to have actual soccer balls, used balls made out of bound-up newspaper. He excelled at the sport and began playing professionally. However, at the age of 25, he quit the sport to please his mother, who had always disapproved of his playing soccer as a career, wanting instead for him to be a mechanic.

Guyodo exhibited his work for the first time at the Sent Kiltirèl Afrika Amerika (African American Cultural Center) in Port-au-Prince in 1989 Along with André ...


Adam R. Hornbuckle

was born in Los Angeles, California, the son of William Young, a counselor, and Betty Champion, a hospital administrator. Arthur Champion, his stepfather, was a minister. Young, who grew up in the Watts section of Los Angeles, attended David Starr Jordan High School. As a member of the track and field team, he competed in the 110-meter high hurdles, 300-meter intermediate hurdles, long jump, and triple jump. In 1984 Young finished third in the 110-meter high hurdles at the California Interscholastic Federation State Championships. That year he graduated Jordan High School with personal best times of 14.23 in the high hurdles and 37.54 in the intermediate hurdles.

After graduating high school, Young enrolled in the University of California, Los Angeles. Even without an athletic scholarship, he successfully walked onto the track and field team and in 1985 finished fifth in the 400 meter intermediate hurdles at the Pacific Athletic ...