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Alexandria Library 1939 Civil Rights Sit-In

Presented by Library Director Rose Dawson

2021-04-06 19:00:00 2021-04-06 20:30:00 America/New_York Alexandria Library 1939 Civil Rights Sit-In Virtual

Tuesday, April 06
7:00pm - 8:30pm

Add to Calendar 2021-04-06 19:00:00 2021-04-06 20:30:00 America/New_York Alexandria Library 1939 Civil Rights Sit-In One of the earliest known Civil Rights Sit-Ins happened right here at the Alexandria Library at 717 Queen Street (now the Barrett Branch, but then the only library in Alexandria.) Virtual

One of the earliest known Civil Rights Sit-Ins happened right here at the Alexandria Library at 717 Queen Street (now the Barrett Branch, but then the only library in Alexandria.)

The Alexandria Library Sit-In that occurred on August 21, 1939 is the earliest known library sit-in and a pivotal event in our library's history.  

Library Director Rose Dawson will tell the story of the event organized by local lawyer, Samuel Wilber Tucker, as he had five African-American men  try to get library cards at the then whites-only Alexandria Library. 

The men, who after being refused a library card, then politely sat and read a book at tables in the library.  The flustered staff called the police and the men were escorted out of the Queen Street building. Tucker arranged to have a photographer document the event.  Virtually ignored by most newspapers, the case for equal opportunity continued to be widely reported in the African American press across the country. 

Learn more about this event and how it led to the changes made to the Alexandria Library. 

Venue details


Please register for this event.