Charles Wiggins

(1897-1979) Section 100, Lot 244

After growing up in Evansville, Wiggins came to Indianapolis in the 1920s, working as an auto mechanic in a garage he owned. His skills drew the attention of white patrons and even race car drivers.

As the Gold and Glory Sweepstakes — a 100-mile auto race for the Black Community — grew in popularity, he built his own car, winning the first of his three victories in 1926. But a multicar crash in 1936 put an end to both the series and his racing career, and he ultimately lost his right leg. Fashioning his own wooden leg, he continued to work his magic under the hood at his garage until his death in 1979. WFYI has produced a book and documentary called For Gold and Glory about Wiggins and the racing series.