LOOKING BACK AT LOCAL HISTORY, THROUGH THE EYES OF CHARLES HUNTER PDF Print
Monday, 10 February 2014 13:40

Growing up in Glasgow today, looks much different than it did in the 1940’s, 50’s and into the 60’s. There were not as many opportunities, neither educational nor occupational, especially if you were a black.  Charles grew up in Glasgow, the son of a single mother, and the next to the youngest of six children.  He said times were hard back then and you had to do what you had to do:

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He fondly remembers traveling to Indianapolis, during the summers with his brother, to visit his father.  With Glasgow being so small, the exposure to a large city was great for him growing up.  While racism was evident in Glasgow, he says he never focused on segregation growing up:

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While certain restaurants may have been off limits, he always had Bill Maupin’s:

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His mother worked as a housekeeper for a local white family, which was common in this area.  While his circumstances didn’t make him angry, he did to an extent, resent the fact that on holiday’s his mother would have to go to work to cook first, then come home and cook for the family.  That’s just the way it was back then:

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There wasn’t a lot for Charles to do as a kid, but play basketball.  It was realized, early on, that he had a talent for the game.  He looked up to and watched, the players at Bunche High School:

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Neither of his parents went to college, and he’s not even sure they made it past the 8th grade.  It wasn’t until his Coach talked to him about college that he realized it was within his reach:

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He did perfect his basketball skills. became one of the best and headed off to college. Charles “Big Game” Hunter, is well known for his basketball talent, along with being the first African American recruited by the University of Louisville.  Not realizing it at the time, he was paving the way for those that would come behind him.  He was opening doors and breaking down barriers that had been in place for years.

Ultimately, he chose to attend and play basketball for Oklahoma City College in 1962.  He graduated from college in 1966, the first in his family.      He was away at college when Glasgow, one of the last schools to segregate, finally made the change just before Bowling Green which was last.  He can remember hearing about the Civil Rights movement and about the sit-in’s in Nashville.  Hunter admires many individuals who were involved in the Civil Rights Movement, and credits Ms. Rosa Parks with making one of the biggest statements:  

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After college, he was then recruited to play for the Boston Celtics.  Hunter has worked and lived in various cities, but now makes Glasgow his home once again.  He is very involved in the community and is an avid supporter of the Boys and Girls Club:

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Charles “Big Game” Hunter is a very important part of Glasgow’s history and a pioneer in the Civil Right’s movement.  His struggles and accomplishments made it easier for those that came after him.  Hunter believes it is vital for children and young people should learn their history:

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Hunter says only now, looking back, does he see the big picture.

 

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