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'Unforgivable Blackness'

Jack Johnson, boxing's first black heavyweight champion, was a controversial figure in the early 1900s.

Updated: February 15, 2005, 11:10 AM ET
By Geoffrey C. Ward | Special to ESPN Book Club

The following is excerpted from "Unforgivable Blackness" by Geoffrey C. Ward. Copyright (c) 2004 by The American Lives II Project, LLC. Excerpted by permission of Knopf, a division of Random House, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

Note: To faithfully document Jack Johnson's story, the author made a few editorial decisions worth noting. Because newspaper stories from Johnson's day were littered ...

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