Queen of the Track
Alice soars over the high jump.
Alice anchors her relay team: Lucy Newell, Leila Perry, Rowena Harrison and
In her own words...
More photos of Alice
"It's my wish that every young person read this inspiring book.
Alice Coachman is truly a hero and her accomplishments remind us all to never give up when the
odds are against us."
— Jackie Joyner–Kersee, Olympic gold medalist
Watch Alice jump at the 1948 London Olympics.
See Alice Coachman with author Heather Lang
Read about Alice on teamusa.org
Visit Alice at her website.
Watch Alice talk about her childhood.
Learn about Alice's favorites
When Alice Coachman was a girl, most white people wouldn't shake her hand. Yet when the King of England placed an Olympic medal around her neck, he extended his hand to Alice in congratulations. Standing on a podium in London's Wembley Stadium, Alice was a long way from the fields of Georgia where she ran barefoot as a child. With a record-breaking leap, she had become the first African-American woman to win an Olympic gold medal. Here is the inspiring story of an athlete who never took her eyes off the prize.
Floyd Cooper is the award-winning illustrator of more than 75 books for children. You can visit him at
*A portion of the author's royalties will be donated to the Alice Coachman Foundation,
which helps deserving and proven amateur athletes reach their full potential.
Boyds Mills Press
Ages: 5 and up
Queen of the Track trailer
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Get to know Alice
“From the very first gold medal I won in 1939, my momma used to
stress being humble. You're no better than anyone else. The people you pass on the ladder will be
the same people you'll be with when the ladder comes down.”
— Alice to New York Times, April 27, 1995
“When the going gets tough and you feel like throwing your hands in the
air, listen to that voice that tells you 'Keep going. Hang in there.' Guts and determination will pull
— Alice to The New York Times, April 27, 1995
Alice attacks the hurdles.
“The [high jump] pits they have now —
I could sleep in them.”
— Alice to Newsday, May 6, 1996
“You have to have some guts if you want to get somewhere. You can't just give
up. You have to go on and on and on.”
— Alice to The Denver Post, June 27, 2004