Print Edition Of My Book Now Available

On March 27, 2012, in Books, Culture, Press Release, by Claude Johnson

I’m glad to announce that the print version of my new book is now available. “BLACK FIVES: The Alpha Physical Culture Club’s Pioneering African American Basketball Team, 1904-1923″ is a beautiful full-color 122-page high-quality softcover book.

I’m glad to announce that the print edition of my new book is now available.

Get the print version at CreateSpace

Order the print edition from CreateSpace here.

BLACK FIVES: The Alpha Physical Culture Club’s Pioneering African American Basketball Team, 1904-1923 is a beautiful full-color 122-page high-quality softcover book that may be purchased through CreateSpace, an Amazon-owned company that is the leading resource for indie publishers like me.

It also will be available on within a few weeks.

This book is the first in a series about the history of the Black Fives Era. It sells for a suggested retail price of $24.99, and includes over 30 photographs, many of which have never been published in modern times.

Also included is a Foreword by world renowned D.J., sneaker aficionado, publisher, voice-over artist, television personality, record label owner, writer, radio host, M.C., author, and film director Bobbito García.

At the back of the book there is a Reader Discussion Guide with 26 questions intended to serve as a guide for members of book clubs and reading groups.

Best Way To Get Your Book Autographed:

I am pleasantly surprised and touched that so many people have expressed that they want to get a signed copy of my book. Thank you! I would like to make a suggestion. To get your book inscribed by the author, please first call or visit your favorite local bookstore and ask them if they could stock my book or host a book-signing event. Please send me an email or use the comment section below if have a specific shop in mind that you wish to recommend.


Book shops can purchase this title for their resale inventory by 1) checking the retail distribution catalog of the Ingram Book Company, 2) getting this title through CreateSpace Direct, which is a program they have specifically for retailers, or 3) contacting me directly for help regarding setting up wholesale prices.

Book Signings and Appearances:

April 13, 2012
Morehouse College
Sale Hall

This will be in connection with a panel discussion featuring author Ron Thomas and myself, as part of the college’s HOUSEsports Weekend Sponsored by ESPN. (It will be my first ever book signing!)


Get the Nook Edition ebook at Barnes & Noble

Order the Nook Edition here.

Readers may continue to get the e-book versions of this book, which are available for 99¢ at the websites of Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

Get the Kindle Edition ebook at Amazon

Order the Kindle Edition here.

Amazon sells the Kindle Edition, which is readable on its Kindle devices and on Kindle apps. Barnes & Noble sells the Nook Edition, readable on its Nook devices.

At this time I am still waiting for Apple to complete its approval process, which would make the e-book available via iTunes to be read using the iBooks app. The only issue is that they apparently have a heavy backlog.

How To Get This Book For Free:

To get this book for free as an e-book, you must first join the mailing list by using the signup box on the right. You will subsequently receive an email with easy instructions for how to download the e-book in one of several formats:

Kindle Edition (.mobi for Kindle devices and Kindle apps)

ePub Format (for Apple iBooks, Nook, Sony Reader, Kobo, and most e-reading apps such as Stanza, Adobe Digital Editions, etc.)

Brief Book Summary:

Black Fives: The Alpha Physical Culture Club's Pioneering African American Basketball Team, 1904-1923

The print version is now available.

Formed in 1904, the Alpha Physical Culture Club of Harlem was America’s first African American athletic club. Its founders were Jamaican-born and hoped to address rampant lung disease among blacks living in New York City’s overcrowded tenements by providing proper exercise facilities they could use without bias. The club’s basketball team, known as the Alpha Big Five, became nationally famous during the 1910s while sticking faithfully to strict amateur values. But the times were changing. The Alphas’ version of pure sport for its own sake was threatened by new black fives with visions of play-for-pay, led by team owners like fellow Caribbean immigrant Robert Douglas, the man who was about to organize the New York (Harlem) Rens. Which ideal would prevail? The future of basketball was at stake.

5 Responses to “Print Edition Of My Book Now Available”

  1. Ronald A. Smith says:

    Looking forward to having your book on our North American Society for Sport History Book Display, June 1-4, 2012.

  2. Fred Sinclair says:

    When will I get my free book.

    • Black Fives says:

      Thanks for your interest! You should have gotten an email with a confirmation link, which you must click in order to be confirmed on our list. Immediately after you do that, then you’ll get an email with a download code. The reason you have to confirm is that you have to “opt in” yourself in order to follow anti-SPAM laws. If you can’t find the email then let us know and we’ll resend it.

  3. Anthony says:

    I just watched the ESPN account og the original basketball teams. So interested that I want to buy ALL the jerseys(SOLD OUT- Harlem Rens) and obtain the book. When will u have another book signing???

    • Black Fives says:

      Anthony thanks for your interest. Yeah, many of these jerseys are sold out or only available in huge sizes like 3X or 4X. Book is definitely accessible. Not sure when next book signing — and it depends where you are located — but you can get all updates by joining the mailing list to stay in touch. Thank you!

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Quote of the Month

“It is the tale of progress—in both sport and society. And, in its comprehensive nature, the exhibition is a triumph of cultural history.”
—Nick Schonberger on the Black Fives Exhibition at the New-York Historical Society, for Triangle Offense (Complex Magazine)

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