Coley Wallace, a boxer, who was best known for his film role as Joe Louis in "The Joe Louis Story" was also a bouncer at the Savoy in the early 1950s.
He reminisced, standing in front of the entrance to the Savoy, which was right in the center of the block between 140th and 141st Streets, he would see the sky through the split between the two identical buildings across Lenox Avenue. Thanks to his memory, the otherwise ordinary scenery of two buildings can conjure an image of what the visitors to the Savoy might have seen long after it is gone.
(The Savoy Ballroom commemorative marker is situated slightly north of the actual location of the entrance to the ballroom.)
He passed away on Jan 30, 2005, at the age of 77.
Frankie Manning and Coley Wallace at the dedication ceremony, May 26, 2002. (photo courtesy of Terry Monaghan)
Mark the Savoy home