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Fun Facts about Althea Gibson

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Did you know that Althea Gibson had four younger siblings? Do you know where she was born and raised? Do you know who her tennis coach was? Find out lots of facts and information about this famous American tennis star in our facts file below.

Fun Fact 1 Althea Gibson was a famous American sportswoman, she was a professional tennis player and golfer whose outstanding achievements led her to global recognition.

Fun Fact 2 Althea Gibson was born on August 25th, 1927 in Clarendon County, South Carolina in the United States of America. She passed away in 2003.

Fun Fact 3: Althea Gibson's father was called Daniel and her mother was called Annie Bell. Both of her parents worked on a cotton farm as sharecroppers.

Fun Fact 4: Althea Gibson had four younger siblings; she had one brother and three sisters.

Fun Fact 5: Althea Gibson began playing paddle tennis as a young girl. Paddle tennis is a form of tennis which is played in a smaller court with a lower net and without double lanes. This type of tennis is played using a solid paddle instead of a racquet with strings.

Fun Fact 6: Althea Gibson earned some great sporting achievements as a child. Her tennis skills became apparent when she was young. By 1939, when she was just 12 years old, she became the women's paddle tennis champion for New York City!

Fun Fact 7: Althea Gibson moved to Harlem with her family in 1930. They lived in a Police Athletic League area. A Police Athletic League area can be described as an American police organization department which coaches youngsters in sport and other educational subjects. This didn't apply during daytime hours when children were allowed to play organized sports.

Fun Fact 8: Althea Gibson attended tennis lessons as a young teenager. She was coached at the Cosmopolitan Tennis Club located in the Sugar Hill area of Harlem.

Fun Fact 9: Althea Gibson's first tennis tournament came in 1941 when she won the (ATA) American Tennis Association New York State Championship. She won this same award many, many times in the years that followed!

Fun Fact 10: One famous quotes once written by Althea Gibson was, 'I knew that I was an unusual, talented girl, through the grace of God, I didn't need to prove that to myself. I only wanted to prove it to my opponents.'

Fun Fact 11: Althea Gibson's tennis career continued to gain more and more success, particularly after a physician called Walter Johnson introduced himself to her and gave her opportunities to enter more advanced competitions.

Fun Fact 12: Althea Gibson set some remarkable records. One of her greatest achievements was becoming the first African American to win a Grand Slam title at the French Open.

Fun Fact 13: This incredibly gifted sportswoman is remembered by people across the globe. She has inspired many to better themselves. Here is a quote from Venus Williams, a current professional tennis player, 'I am honored to have followed in such great footsteps, her accomplishments set the stage for my success, and through players like myself and Serena and many others to come, her legacy will live on.'

Fun Fact 14: Althea Gibson was also a professional golfer. She joined the (LPGA) Ladies Professional Golf Association in 1964. She reached a tie for second position in 1970 at the Len Immke Buick Open.

Fun Fact 15: Althea Gibson married William Darben in 1965. He was the brother of her best friend Rosemary Darben who was also a professional tennis player. The couple divorced in 1976.

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