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Hoosier History Live

Aug 21, 2022

Buckle up for a bumpy expedition through an era of sports history and the life of a champion race driver that had been mostly forgotten for decades after the Great Depression.

The Gold and Glory Sweepstakes was, as our guest has written, "a freewheeling, dust-raising, 100-mile grind around a one-mile dirt track at the Indiana State Fairgrounds in Indianapolis . . . (It was) an annual sporting event so grand it attracted the attention of national news agencies as well as thousands of spectators."

During the 1920s and ‘30s, the Gold and Glory Sweepstakes was the showcase event of an Indianapolis-based professional racing circuit for African American drivers and mechanics with events in Chicago, Detroit, Dayton and other Midwestern cities. During an era of racial segregation, the circuit showcased competitors who were not welcomed by the American Automobile Association, the national sanctioning body of auto races that included the Indianapolis 500.