Today the City of Atlanta will commemorate the 50th anniversary of the hiring of its first African-American firefighters, April 1, 1963 at Fire Station 16, as well as a number of historic firsts in the city.
The first female African American firefighters in Atlanta started work in 1977, during the time when Maynard Jackson served as mayor.
Most notably forgotten is the residency of former world boxing middleweight champion, Theodore “Tiger” Flowers (1895-1927), who’s 20-room mansion once stood where a fire station stood.
Honoring Flowers will be Atlanta’s own five-time world heavyweight champion Evander Holyfield.
Among other scheduled guests are Mayor Kasim Reed, City Council members Michael Julian Bond, Ivory Lee Young, Jr., and Fire Rescue Chief Kelvin Cochran.
Flowers, moved to Atlanta in 1920 where he resided until 1926 when he won the won title defeating Harry Greb, the World Middleweight Champion.
“The Georgia Deacon,” as he was labeled held a record of 115 wins, (53 by knockout) 14 losses and 6 draws.