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Brooklyn Elite Checkers Club

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966 Fulton St, New York, NY 11238, USA

Pool checkers had long been played in the parks, barbershops and alleys of New York City. The Brooklyn Elite Checkers Club was founded in 1973 in order to give pool checkers devotees a home. Club members now play in the Salvation Army library since their headquarters was accidentally demolished in 1986 by a nearby wrecking ball. During the slavery era in Louisiana, Whites played what we commonly think of as checkers, while African-Americans were played pool checkers. This is the game played by the Brooklyn Elite Checkers Club and most blacks today. It differs from what club members call "straight checkers" insomuch as any piece can be moved forward and backwards and kings can be moved an unlimited number of times. This makes for a faster paced and more involved game.

Credits: From Holding On: Dreamers, Visionaries, Eccentrics and Other American Heroes by Dave Isay, (W.W. Norton & Company) and the documentary "Brooklyn Elite Checkers Club" produced by Dave Isay, Allyson Luchak & Mel Gragido. (1:42)