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1957 - Black Golfer at Bonnie Brae

Black golfer at Bonnie Brae
Event Date: 
January 10, 1956
Event Type: 
Modern Era Begins 1946-1959

James Otis Williams became the first black golfer to play at the Bonnie Brae municipal golf course on January 10, 1957.

  • The donor of the land had given it to the city on the condition that the course be restricted to whites.
  • Legally, if blacks played on the golf course, ownership of the land would return to the donor.
  • On December 16, 1951, a group of African American men came to play at the course.
  • This began a legal battle between the NAACP and the city which ended five years later when the North Carolina Supreme Court ordered the city to either purchase the land or close the park.