August 25: Birthday of Athea Gibson, the first black to with a Grand Slam Title, the French Open.
Athea Gibson was born on August 25, 1927, in Silver, South Carolina, from two cotton sharecropers parents. She was an American tennis player and professional golfer. In 1956, she won the French Open, becoming the first black to win a Grand Slam title and hence cross the color line of international tennis. In both 1957 and 1958 , she won both the Wimbledon and the U.S. Nationals, the precursor of the U.S. Open. This won her the Associated Press Female Athlete of the Year. During her career, she won 11 Grand Slam tournaments, including six doubles titles. She was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame and the International Women's Sports Hall of Fame. In the early 1960s she also became the first black player to compete on the women's professional golf tour. She died on September 28, 2003.
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