I want you to read the article for a moment, then sit back and reflect on the fact this article and photo was published in a northern paper in May, 1939. There had been a lynching of a black man in Ruston just a few months before. For a black man at that time to be invited to speak to a room full of white women is unheard of in the south. What an absolutely brave man.
Dr. Gray was a professor at Southern University, President of what is now Florida A.&M. University and later became a pastor of one of the largest churches in Philadelphia, Bright Hope Baptist Church, when his father, the former pastor passed away. Here is another tidbit for you: Rev. Gray was a friend of Dr. Martin Luther King. Dr. King also spoke many times at Rev. Gray’s church! Rev. Gray passed away in January, 1972.
I LOVE finding these little jaw dropping tidbits!
2 thoughts on “An African-American Man is a Guest Speaker to a White Women’s Business Club…in 1939.”
Hello there. I’d love to discuss with you some history I know of the region.
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Would love to! I am at the library from 9 – 6 everyday during the work week. I’ll be taking Thursday and Friday off for a medical procedure, but am usually here otherwise.