Chickasaw Park, Louisville, KY
Chickasaw Park, Louisville, KY



United States

Chickasaw Park

Designed by the Olmsted Brothers firm in 1923 and fully implemented by the 1930s, this neighborhood park is believed to be the only municipal park explicitly designed by the firm to serve African Americans during the time of segregation. Chickasaw remained the only park to offer full access to recreational space and other public park amenities to the Black community of West End until the city’s parks were desegregated in 1954-55. Spanning 61 acres, the west edge of the park runs along the east bank of the Ohio River, with the east side of the park abutting Southwestern Parkway. Park features include a fishing pond, situated in the southeast quadrant of the park, as well as various community amenities for active and passive recreation, including picnic areas, playgrounds, a splash pad, winding pedestrian paths, and several ballfields. The park’s red-cedar Cypress and white pines are characteristic of the Olmsted plan for the Louisville park system. The park’s clay tennis courts, the only free public clay tennis courts in the city of Louisville, have been utilized by the West Louisville Tennis Club since 1923. Chickasaw Park has a rich history of fostering community and a strong athletic culture. Notable athletes including Althea Gibson, the first African American woman to win at Wimbledon, and champion boxer Muhammad Ali have associations with Chickasaw Park. The Louisville park system was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1982.

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