Comer Cox Park
Comer Lane Cox born May 9, 1905, in Athens, Alabama, the namesake of Comer Cox Park in Springfield, was a star athlete in his youth who went on to lead the Springfield Urban League. The Cox family lived on Browns Ferry Street; family members worked as day laborers, blacksmiths, grocery store proprietors, housekeepers, and laundresses. Cox attended Fisk University, a historically Black university in Nashville, Tennessee, where he received a degree in business and starred as quarterback for the football team. While attending Fisk, Cox also played professional baseball with two Negro League teams, the New York Elite Giants and the Cleveland Cubs, compiling a career .297 batting average as a third baseman/right fielder.
Comer Cox spent his life working to improve race relations and prospects for African Americans, usually for the Urban League. He had more than 20 years' experience with groups including the Milwaukee Urban League, the Booker T. Washington Center in Erie, Pennsylvania, and the Marion, Indiana, Urban League when he was named executive director of the Springfield Urban League in 1962. Cox would head the local agency until his death in 1971. Our local park Comer Cox Park was named after this influential African American.