Vanessa Williams, first black Miss America

September 17, 1983. At the time of Williams' historic title, the Miss America pageant had a 63-year history. Black women weren't allowed to compete for the first 30 years of the pageant. A year after being crowned, nude photos of her emerged. She was forced to give up her title. Despite the controversy, Williams launched a successful music career. Her 1994 album, 'The Sweetest Days,' went platinum. She also sang the Oscar-winning track, "The Color of the Wind," featured in the Disney hit, 'Pocahontas.'.