Archie Haggie Harris Jr. (July 3, 1918 – October 29, 1965) was an American world-record-setting discus thrower and football player.

Raised in Ocean City, New Jersey, Harris graduated in 1937 from Ocean City High School.[1]

As an Indiana University student-athlete, Harris won the 1940 NCAA Track and Field Championships,[2] defending his title 1941 with the world record of 53.26 m. In 1941 he also became US champion. At, Indiana, Harris also played football, lettering on the Indiana Hoosiers football team in 1938, and 1939, and 1940. He was a second-team selection on the 1940 All-Big Ten Conference football team as an end.[3]

During World War II Harris joined the United States Army Air Forces, reaching the rank of second lieutenant and serving as a bomber pilot in the 332d Fighter Group, known as the Tuskegee Airmen.[4] An African American, he was unable to find a job as a commercial pilot after the war. He became physical education teacher at the YMCA in Harlem.[5]

In 2001 he was inducted into the Indiana University Athletics Hall of Fame.[6]

Harris died on October 29, 1965, at Veterans Administration Hospital in New York City.[7]


  1. ^ Miller, Fred. "Beach History: World Record Holder Worked the Beach Patrol; Ocean City High School graduate Archie Harris set a 1941 world record in discus.", Ocean City, NJ, Patch, June 14, 2011. Accessed November 9, 2020. "Archie Harris, a 1937 graduate of Ocean City High School, was a senior at Indiana University when he broke the world record at the NCAA track and field championships in Palo Alto, CA."
  2. ^ Robert J. Scott; Myles A. Pocta (July 27, 2012). Honor on the Line: The Fifth Down and the Spectacular 1940 College Football Season. iUniverse. pp. 82–. ISBN 978-1-4759-3209-6.
  3. ^ Hilligan, Earl (November 24, 1940). "Harmon and Evashevski Repeat on AP's All-Big Ten: Michigan Stars Named for Third Year in a Row". St. Petersburg Times. St. Petersburg, Florida. Associated Press. p. 12. Retrieved November 9, 2020 – via Google News.
  4. ^ tkelly (February 22, 2020). "An Enlightening Lesson on Ocean City's Black History". OCNJ Daily. Ocean City, New Jersey. Retrieved November 9, 2020.
  5. ^ Fred Miller: Ocean City: America's Greatest Family Resort. Arcadia Publishing, 2003, ISBN 9780738524474, pp. 126–128
  6. ^ Indiana University Athletics: Hall of Fame - Archie Harris
  7. ^ "Archie Harris; World Champion Discus Thrower". Delaware County Daily Times. Chester, Pennsylvania. November 4, 1965. p. 4. Retrieved November 9, 2020 – via open access.