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Patterson , Charles
The late Charles Patterson began his basketball career with Portland area church leagues in northeast Portland during the 1920s, and was later a star on a Benson High School team that won the City championship with him leading the league in scoring 1932. Patterson was one of the best high school players in Oregon and a Portland Interscholastic League all-star. He led Benson to the state tournament where they placed third, and he made second team all-tournament. During the 1930s and before, African- Amercians were not allowed many opportunities to play college basketball because of a system of racial discrimination that did not allow them to frequent many restaurants and hotels, as well as discriminatory restrictions in college entrance and housing accomodations. After high school he played two seasons for Southern Oregon University and in 1936 Patterson was awarded a scholarship to play basketball at the University of Oregon. While at the University of oregon Patterson was the first African-American basketball player in the northern division of the Pacific Coast Conference. He was known as the "Brown Bomber", and according to his long-time coach Howard Hobson endured many racial insults from players, officials and spectators during his college playing days, but displayed great poise and became an outstanding college basketball player nonetheless. In 1983, he was inducted into the Southern Oregon College Hall of Fame and was inducted into the University of Oregon Athletic Hall of Fame in 1995. The Portlan Interscholastic League Hall of Fame inducted him in 2004. After college he played basketball for Commercial Ironworks and Signal Oil of the American Basketball League. In 1940, he played professionally for the Bellingham Cougars and also did a stint with the famous Harlem Globetrotters. He was also an exceptional baseball and soccer player.