Oral Histories: Remembering Brown v. Board of Education at 65


WATCH — A Brown v. Board Oral History: Joan Anderson Remembers Her Parents Who Sued for Equality, and What It Was Like in Delaware During the First Day of Integration

May 14, 2019

Joan E. Anderson is the daughter of Leon and Beulah Anderson, plaintiffs in Delaware’s Belton (Bulah) v. Gebhart case that was later consolidated as part of the Brown v. Board Supreme Court case.

In this oral history, Anderson remembers the challenges of being the first to integrate public schools in Delaware.

Anderson later attended and graduated from Claymont High School. She attended Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee, for two years, and transferred to Boston University, from which she graduated in 1960 with a BFA degree. She worked as an actress under the name of Elizabeth Anderson in soap operas. Anderson later worked as a counselor in a drug rehabilitation center called Teen Challenge.

Learn more about the Andersons and the five cases that were ultimately merged into Brown v. Board and see more testimonials from the families who changed America’s schools at our new site: The74Million.org/Brown65.

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Disclosure: The Walton Family Foundation provides financial support to The 74 and funded The Brown Foundation for Educational Equity, Excellence and Research in producing the new book Recovering Untold Stories: An Enduring Legacy of the Brown v. Board of Education Decision.


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