Maryn Wheeler


Excellent, Young Adult, Basketball, Civil Rights, Oscar Robertson, Nonfiction, Crispus Attucks High School

Document Type

Book Review


Crispus Attucks High School began in 1927 as an all-black segregated high school in the Hoosier State. In the early 1920s, the Ku Klux Klan used its large influence in the government and on school boards in Indianapolis to separate blacks and whites in schools and sports. After not being allowed to play in the high school basketball championship for many years, Attucks was given the right to compete. Some of the best basketball players in history were eager for a chance to win the championship, including Oscar Robertson. Disproving stereotypes, their fast-pace, energy, and impressive talent were soon selling out large venues and winning tournament games. After years of disappointment in falling short of the championship title, in 1955 Attucks became the first all-black team in U.S. history to win a racially open championship tournament. Soon, all high schools in Indianapolis wanted black players on their team, easing school integration and furthering acceptance.