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Mary Jessica Hammes

orthopedic surgeon and one of the two black students who desegregated the University of Georgia, was born Hamilton Earl Holmes in Atlanta, Georgia, the son of Alfred “Tup” Holmes, a businessman, and Isabella Holmes, a grade school teacher. His influences in civil rights were strong; his father, grandfather Hamilton Mayo Holmes, and uncle Oliver Wendell Holmes filed suit to desegregate Atlanta's public golf courses in 1955. The resulting 1956 Supreme Court decision on their cases made the golf courses the first integrated public facilities in Atlanta. His mother had been part of a program that integrated blind or partially sighted children into mainstream classrooms.

Hamilton nicknamed Hamp was a successful student at Henry McNeal Turner High School in Atlanta Though shy occasionally stuttering when he spoke he was president of his junior and senior class co captain of the football team captain of the basketball ...


Glenn Allen Knoblock

physician and U.S. Navy officer was born in Detroit, Michigan, the youngest child of Turner W. Ross, who was employed as a mail carrier, and homemaker Julia (Jackson) Ross. Both of Ross's parents were from the South originally, with Turner Ross having earned a college degree in English at Lane College, a historically black college in Jackson, Tennessee, while his mother, Julia, attended Clark University in Atlanta and worked as a schoolteacher prior to the birth of her children. From an early age Ross, who was usually called “Jackson” by his friends and family, was interested in becoming a doctor, a goal that became heightened after his sister, Lula Marie Ross, entered the University of Michigan in 1949; she graduated with a bachelor of science degree in nursing in 1953 one of the few African American women at the university at this time to achieve this feat ...


David McBride

orthopedic surgeon and medical professor, was born in Memphis, Tennessee, the son of Augustus Aaron White, a physician, and Vivian Dandridge, a prominent teacher and librarian in the Memphis public schools. White's father died when the boy was only eight years old. The idealism that motivated White to become involved in civil rights was shaped in his boyhood, when Benjamin Hooks, also a Memphis resident and later the national chairman of the NAACP, was a family friend. As a teenager in the 1950s, White worked to register African Americans to vote at a time when many black activists feared violent reprisals for daring to challenge Jim Crow Reflecting on his early activism White later stated I reserved some energy to keeping racial issues in the front of my mind and attempting to make a contribution in terms of communication good will and influencing people and ...