Isaac Murphy: The Rise and Fall of a Black Jockey


Product Details

$25.00  $23.25
Yale University Press
Publish Date
5.43 X 8.58 X 0.87 inches | 0.8 pounds

Earn by promoting books

Earn money by sharing your favorite books through our Affiliate program.

Become an affiliate

About the Author

Katherine C. Mooney is James P. Jones Associate Professor of History at Florida State University. She is the author of Race Horse Men: How Slavery and Freedom Were Made at the Racetrack. She lives in Tallahassee, FL.


"Deeply and impressively researched. . . . Ms. Mooney pieces together a narrative with an arc so tight and clean that it's a wonder it actually happened. . . . It reads, in other words, like a novel, and that is because the author brought not just rigor, but craft."--Max Watman, Wall Street Journal

"For anyone who likes to watch the ponies, or who thrills to the Triple Crown each year, Isaac Murphy: The Rise and Fall of a Black Jockey by Katherine C. Mooney is a book filled with action and history. . . . This is an excellent look at a quietly hidden part of Black history, and it can't be missed."--Terri Schlichenmeyer, Tennessee Tribune

"Covers fresh ground concerning the life of a rider who transcended race in Jim Crow America as he won impressively against white jockeys at racetracks from New York to Kentucky to California in the 1880s and into the '90s."--J. N. Campbell, Thoroughbred Daily News

"This fresh look at the life of the country's most famous African American jockey brings Murphy into fresh relief, offering more information on his family as well as his career spent balancing being black and a high-achieving professional athlete in the years immediately after the Civil War."--Jennifer Kelly, America's Best Racing

"Isaac Murphy is a concise, yet highly informative, detailed rendering of the world of thoroughbred horses and jockeys, the Black struggle during the Nadir, and the impact of an extraordinary Black athlete."--Gerald L. Early, author of A Level Playing Field: African American Athletes and the Republic of Sports

"An eloquent, deeply insightful portrait of an extraordinary athlete at a time when this nation hovered between rising above old racial wrongs and plunging back into a racist abyss. Isaac Murphy's brilliant career and heartbreaking decline embody this era's great potential and its tragic end. Required reading for anyone who wants to understand the forces shaping sports, race, and national character in the nineteenth century and beyond."--Pamela Grundy, co-author of Shattering the Glass: The Remarkable History of Women's Basketball

"Mooney deftly contextualizes one of the most significant figures in horseracing history. Anyone interested in how American sports and society reflect and affect each other should read this book."--James C. Nicholson, author of Racing for America: The Horserace of the Century and the Redemption of a Sport