Every Thursday during February, Windsor Public Library is highlighting photos from moments in local Black history. These photographs have been provided courtesy of Amherstburg Freedom Museum, 277 King St., Amherstburg, Ontario.
Alton C. Parker joined the Windsor Police force in 1942, making him the first Black uniformed Police Officer in Windsor. Upon his promotion in 1951 he became the first Black detective in Canada. In 1966 Detective Parker and his wife Evelyn began hosting the annual Uncle Al’s Kids Party, which was an event that brought joy to many children in the community. In 1976, Brodhead Park which had been the site of the annual festivities was renamed Alton C. Parker Park in his honor. Detective Parker’s commitment to the community and his philanthropic work has been recognized with a number of awards including the 1976 Ontario Medal for Good Citizenship, the 1977 Queen’s Silver Jubilee Medal, and in 1986 Parker received the Harry Jerome Award for his commitment to youth. In 1988 Parker was named the Person of the Year by the North American Black Historical Museum, just prior to his passing in 1989.
For more information and additional resources on Detective Parker, please visit our Famous Windsorite entry.