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Ellen Freudenheim

Barclays Center to Display Historic Photos of "Black Five" Basketball Team, Reports NY Times

By February 3, 2013

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Black History Month & Basketball Memorabilia in Brooklyn

In a classy contribution to Black History Month in Brooklyn, on Monday, Barclays Center will hold a ceremony to unveil a new display of photos of  players for one of the nation's early all black basketball teams, according to an article in Saturday's New York Times. The enlarged, poster-sized photos are taken from last year's book by Claude Johnson, former international licensing director of the NBA and Brooklyn resident,   called Black Fives: The Alpha Physical Culture Club's Pioneering African American Basketball Team, 1904-1923.

The Times article says Mr. Johnson is "counting on the photographs to dispel the notion that the Nets are the first important basketball team to call Brooklyn home. That distinction, he said, belongs to a team called the Smart Set Athletic Club, one of the dozens of all-black teams that once flourished in the Northeast and Midwest. In the Smart Set's first lineup was a player named Edwin F. Horne Jr. -- Teddy Horne, the father of the singer Lena Horne."

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