Little Known Black History Fact: Charles Wiggins

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  • Charlie Wiggins, a.k.a. the “Negro Speed King” was the first black man to win a major racecar competition in America. The shoeshine boy from Evansville, Indiana shined the shoes of an auto repair shop owner, who, in turn, made him the best mechanic in the town of Evansville. Young Charlie could tell what kind of car was coming down the road just by hearing the engine. With growing car production in Indianapolis, Wiggins uprooted his family, moved to the new city and opened a garage. Many of his customers were drivers of the Indianapolis 500.
     

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