Chester Pierce broke racial barriers when, in 1947, he joined his Harvard football team to play against the University of Virginia. At that time, black people were not allowed to sit at lunch counters, they had to use separate entrances, and they weren’t allowed to play college football against white players.
Chester’s team didn’t care about those laws. Amid dropped jaws, jeering, and booing, Chester played and his teammates followed his lead.
Laura Freeman’s expressive illustrations create an atmosphere of bold moves and a tide of crimson togetherness that could not be stopped.
Based on a true story.
Gloria Respress-Churchwell is a co-contributor of the Robert Churchwell Journalism Collection to the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture. Follow Chester! is Churchwell's first picture book. She lives in Boston, Massachusetts.
A little known civil rights hero and college football MVP finally gets a voice in this fictional account detailing Chester Pierce's game-changing play as he became the first black college football player to compete south of the Mason-Dixon Line.