Blacks @ Dartmouth 1775 to 1950

African Americans @ Dartmouth College 1775-1950

Talley Robert Holmes

Dartmouth College
Class of 1910 (A.B.)
Born
Dec 09, 1889, Washington, DC
Died
Mar 01, 1969, Washington, DC
Other Degrees
1924 Howard (LL.B.)
School Dartmouth College Class 1910
Born Dec 09, 1889, Washington, DC Degree A.B.
Died Mar 01, 1969, Washington, DC Other Degrees
1924 Howard (LL.B.)

Career summary

College athlete (tennis), attorney, businessman, educator, co-founder and two time champion of the American Tennis Association

Quotes from biographical sources

Talley Robert Holmes, a 1910 graduate of Dartmouth College, was among the founders of the American Tennis Association (ATA) in 1916 and he became the first national champion in 1917. The ATA was formed because the National Tennis Association excluded all people of color at the time. And Holmes was clearly the class of the nation at the time, winning the individual championship four times and claiming the doubles crown eight more times.

A native of Washington, D.C., Holmes had an amazing career outside of tennis. He served as an interpreter and intelligence officer in World War I. Upon returning to Washington, D.C., he taught German, French, Latin, and mathematics in the District school system. While teaching, he studied law at Howard University and received a degree in 1924. Mr. Holmes also owned Whitelaw Hotel, which was the largest hotel available to African-Americans in Washington at the time. All the while, he was laying the groundwork in the ATA Championships, which would eventually crown both Arthur Ashe and Althea Gibson as champions.

Holmes died on March 10, 1969 in D.C. at age eighty.