Pellom McDaniels III
Pellom McDaniels III has been a professional football player, an inventor, an artist, an author and a professor. He's still many of these, but his chief title at Emory is faculty curator of the African American collections in the Manuscript, Archives and Rare Book Library (MARBL), where he has been on staff since July. He brings a new focus to MARBL, on African Americans and sports. The Kentucky Derby Museum at Churchill Downs has opened a traveling exhibit on jockey Isaac Burns Murphy as part of Black History Month. McDaniel's recently authored The Prince of Jockeys: The Life of Isaac Burns Murphy. He was one of the most dynamic jockeys of his era. Still considered one of the finest riders of all time. Murphy was the first jockey to win the Kentucky Derby three times, and his 44% win record remains unmatched. Despite his success, Murphy was pushed out of Thoroughbred racing when African-American jockeys were force off the track and he died in obscurity. More than the story of a great athlete, The Prince of Jockeys honors a man who epitomized the rise of the black middle class. Murphy helped prove that African-Americans were not only worthy of citizenship, but capable of representing the best in humanity. The exhibit, on the second floor in the Pollard Gallery, is based on the biography of Murphy recently written by Pellom McDaniels. The exhibit features a series of panels that explore the contributions of not only Murphy but also other African Americans to horse racing. McDaniels will be at the museum from 4 to 6:30 p.m. on Feb. 22 to discuss and autograph the book, titled "The Prince of Jockeys: the Life of Isaac Burns Murphy."