This past Saturday new exhibit, “Holmes v. Atlanta: Changing the Game” opened. Curated by a team of HSOC students (HTS majors Anna Arnau, Ericka Brundage, Hayden Gregg, plus doctoral student Renee Shelby) working under direction of Mary McDonald and Jennifer Sterling, the exhibit documents the life of Alfred “Tup” Holmes, a Black golfer whose successful Supreme Court suit compelled integration of the Bobby Jones Golf Course and other public recreational facilities in Atlanta and throughout the U.S.

In a matter of roughly ten weeks, the HSOC team pulled together an extensive series of panels that fill the walls of a large reception space at the course’s clubhouse. One highlight for me was a map showing locales where forty-some subsequent civil rights cases were won based on citations to Holmes v. Atlanta.

The opening reception, held in the middle of a very rainy day, attracted an overflow crowd of over a hundred visitors, including many members of the Holmes family. Ninety-seven-year-old Charlie Bell, who played alongside “Tup” Holmes in the first Black foursome to play at Bobby Jones, on Christmas Eve of 1955, flew in from New Orleans for the occasion. He and the Holmes family were deeply moved and deeply appreciative of what Mary, Jennifer, and team had done. So were the members of the Friends of Bobby Jones Golf Course, a neighborhood association devoted to preserving the Buckhead facility. I spent more than an hour fielding compliments on behalf of Jennifer and Mary, who had to miss the event while attending an academic conference.

Congrats to everyone involved in staging the exhibit, which will remain on permanent display at the club.

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School of History and Sociology
Georgia Institute of Technology
Old Civil Engineering Building
221 Bobby Dodd Way
Atlanta, GA 30332-0225