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Black Jack: The Ballad of Jack Johnson by Charles R. Smith
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Black Jack: The Ballad of Jack Johnson by Charles R. Smith


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This nonfiction picture book tells the story of the world's first black heavyweight champion, the charismatic Jack "Black Jack" Johnson.

Born as Arthur John Johnson in the southern state of Texas, Jack Johnson was one of the most renowned boxers of the twentieth century. Through hard work and persistence, he climbed the ranks, taking a swing and a jab and eventually busting the color barrier. As the first Black man to win the Heavyweight Championship, there was more than a title on the line.

Published to commemorate the 100th anniversary of this history-making bout (July 4, 1910). This is an extraordinary marriage of poetry, fabulous collage artwork, and a splendid achievement in its own right.