The problem is her career was in the 50s. You won't find a whole lot of discussion about players before Maria Bueno and Margaret Court because there just aren't a whole lot of people who have seen video of players pre-1960. Like Suzanne Lenglen, I have only ever seen short clips of Gibson in action- never a complete match, so, nothing happened to Althea- it's just difficult to talk about the tennis of a player you've never seen play.bandabou said:Long time coming! Thx Rollo. Finally a thread for our first champ! You see all those threads in BFTP and you wonder what happened to Althea?
I am sure it's true that there was little money in the early women's pro-game, but I think I read in Althea's case that she was actually ripped off by either a husband or an accountant, which is the reason she was penniless. Not sure about any details, but I think she made some very, very good money from pro-tennis, mainly as the warm up act for the Harlem Globetrotters, TV appearances as a singer and also from Pro-Golf. I think it was unscrupulous people around her who took it all.What a sad story. I don't think we really appreciate just how little money there was in the game pre-Open era.
It makes me wonder how much a player perhaps not right at the top but maybe around the top 20 for several years might leave the game with. Considering coaches etc, maybe it mightn't be as much as one might think, though
It is nice to see her being honoured - maybe she'll be up there looking on.
Does anyone know which article this is referring too? I always thought of Althea as a larger than life pioneering champion along with Wilma Rudolph. She was very important to me as a young kid. I'm glad that she is being honored tomorrow. In addition to the great African American "first" being honored, I hope that the tennis world shows in in mass and pays this great tennis champ her due respects as well. I wish I could be there.In 1995 Buxton spent $1,500 of her own money to feed Gibson and pay her rent before making an appeal on her behalf in Tennis World, highlighting her hardship. "I didn't want my name on it in case she got cross with me and wouldn't speak to me," she said. "She could get on her high horse very easily. Eventually she received oddles of money. She was a millionaire by the time I'd finished. Money came in from all over the world in different currencies. We spent days just opening up the envelopes from people who remembered her."
I am not sure it was an article per se. Angela contacted everyone in the media she could think of and told Althea's story to anyone who'd listen. The press all over the world picked it up and ran a story, but I don't think it was a syndicated article necessarily. Angela is actually quite good at getting publicity. I don't know if that's what she did after she stopped playing tennis. I remember in the 70's and 80's she was always on British TV around Wimbledon time complaining how the All England Club had snubbed giving her membership because she was Jewish. It got really boring hearing her trot the same story out year after year. When you think what a relatively unremarkable player she was, she certainly managed to keep herself in the news.Does anyone know which article this is referring too?