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Prudence Crandall was a schoolteacher who fought to integrate her school in Canterbury, Connecticut, and educate black women in the early nineteenth century. When Crandall accepted a black woman as a student, she unleashed a storm of controversy that catapulted her to national notoriety, and drew the attention of the most significant pro- and anti-slavery activists of the day. The Connecticut state legislature passed its infamous Black Law in an attempt to close down her school. Arrested and jailed, Crandall’s legal legacy had a lasting impact—Crandall v. State was the first full-throated civil rights case in U.S. history. The arguments by attorneys in Crandall played a role in two of the most fateful Supreme Court decisions, Dred Scott v. Sandford, and the landmark case of Brown v. Board of Education. In Prudence Crandall’s Legacy, author and lawyer Donald E. Williams Jr. marshals a wealth of detail concerning the life and work of Prudence Crandall, her unique role in the fight for civil rights, and her influence on legal arguments for equality in America.
Image Credit: Connecticuthistory.org
Friday, June 27, 2014
New Release: Williams, Jr., on "Prudence Crandall's Legacy"
New from Wesleyan University Press: Prudence Crandall’s Legacy: The Fight for Equality in the 1830s, Dred Scott, and Brown v. Board of Education (June 2014), by Donald E. Williams, Jr. (president pro tempore of the Connecticut State Senate). The publisher explains: