Althea Gibson

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Gibson, Althea

Gibson, Althea (ălthēˈə), 1927–2003, African-American tennis player, b. Silver, S.C. In 1948 she won the first of 10 straight national black women's singles championships. She was the first African American to play in the U.S. grass court championships at Forest Hills, N.Y. (1950), and at Wimbledon, England (1951). In addition to many international tournament victories, she won the French women's singles championship in 1956 and the U.S. and British championships in both 1957 and 1958. She retired from competition in 1958. In 1971 she was named to the National Lawn Tennis Hall of Fame.


See her autobiography, I Always Wanted to Be Somebody (1958).

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Gibson, Althea

(1927–  ) tennis player; born in Silver, S.C. The first black player to win a major tennis championship, she won the Italian (1956–57), Wimbledon (1957–58), and the U.S. Open (1957–58). After retiring from tennis, she became a professional golfer on the ladies' tour.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.
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