Tuesday, February 3, 2009

William Powell

I had originally intended to keep the BHM posts about poetry, because essentially doing one of these every day was gonna be tough enough without adding background information etc. Not that I'm lazy but I am a college student in the end of a quarter, but as with all well-intentioned plans, things changed.

William Powell is a golfer and WWII veteran from Minerva, Ohio. He attended college at Wilberforce University, where he and his brother started the first golf team there and played against the white Ohio Northern University in 1937. They beat ONU twice, in '37 and '38. This was the first time an HBCU played much less beat a white school. After returning from the war, he went to play golf at some local courses and was not welcome even though he was a veteran. So he built his own course.

Clearview Golf Club in East Canton, Ohio is the first and currently the only golf course built, owned and operated by a Black American. It has become not only the foundation for a Powell golf dynasty but it's also played host to some historic events, including a rematch of the Wilberforce and ONU golf teams in April, 2002. Wilberforce again claimed victory, Ohio Northern 313, Wilberforce 383.

Clearview became a National Historic site in 2001.


Special Thanks to Julie Cajigas for alerting me to this story.
Sources: African American Golf Digest
Clearview Golf Club
ONU Athletics

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