Harlem Globetrotters

Enshrined 2002


In basketball's storied history, there may be no single organization more synonymous with the game than the world-famous Harlem Globetrotters. Originally formed from the Wendell Phillips High School, the team played in the Negro American Legion League as the "Giles Post," and in 1927 turned professional as the Savoy Big Five under manager Dick Hudson. Later that year, promoter and future Hall of Famer Abe Saperstein bought the team and re-named it the Harlem Globetrotters. Up until the late 1930s, the Globetrotters were a serious competitive team, and in 1940 won the prestigious World Professional Basketball Tournament in Chicago. With the acquisition of Inman Jackson in 1939, the Globetrotters began to work more light entertainment and comedic routines into their appearances. After World War II, the team became real "globetrotters," travelling the world and entertaining thousands. With players such as Geese Ausbie, Goose Tatum, Marques Haynes, Curly Neal and Meadowlark Lemon, the Globetrotters became basketball ambassadors, bringing their showmanship and goodwill to millions. The team remains as popular as ever.

Career Highlights

The Globetrotters have played more than 20,000 games in more than 100 countries around the world.
The 25th anniversary tour is highlighted by a game before 75,000 fans in Berlin's Olympic Stadium, 1951
"Sweet Georgia Brown" becomes team's signature song, 1952
Recipients of the John Bunn Award, 1999