AUSTIN, Texas—In celebration of Alumni Diversity Weekend, two new exhibits by the Tarlton Law Library went on display today at The University of Texas Law School including one featuring Gloria Bradford, the first African-American woman to graduate from the Law School.
Both exhibits are on display in the Law School’s Susman-Godfrey Atrium and are free and open to the public.
Bradford, who has a Law School society named after her, entered UT Law in 1951 and graduated with her LL. B. in 1954. According to her sister, Edith Bradford King, Thurgood Marshall encouraged Bradford to apply to the Law School. After her graduation, Bradford moved to Houston where she practiced with the law firm of Dent, Ford & Wickliff. In October of 1954, she became the first African-American woman to try a case in a Harris County district court.
Now in her seventies, Bradford is retired and lives in Oakland, California. The University of Texas School of Law societies are named for individuals that have had a significant impact on the Law School community.
The exhibit features photographs and excerpts from an oral history interview with Bradford, as well as T-shirts, photographs, and other artifacts that illuminate the activities of the Law School Bradford Society.
A second exhibit, “Black, White, and Burnt Orange,” is also on display. The exhibit covers the integration movement at the University of Texas during the 1960s, focusing specifically on the period following the admittance of African-Americans to The University of Texas, when students worked toward full integration of the campus community through desegregation of campus housing, lunch counters and theaters along the Drag, and university athletic teams.
The exhibit also discusses how members of the UT Law faculty at the time became involved in the movement for integration. The exhibit is composed of materials from Tarlton Law Library's Rare Books & Special Collections department as well as from the Prints and Photographs Collection of the Center for American History.
Tarlton Law Library: http://tarlton.law.utexas.edu/
The Society Program at UT School of Law: http://www.utexas.edu/law/depts/admissions/studentlife/societies.html