Two Women of Little Rock

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Elizabeth Eckford, followed by an angry crowd after she was denied entrance to Little Rock Central High School, September 4, 1957. The girl in the light dress behind her is Hazel Bryan. (Will Counts Collection, Indiana University Archives)

David Margolick tells the story of Elizabeth Eckford and Hazel Bryan Massery, two women whose names might not be well known, but whose image surely is. The famed photo taken of them in September 1957 shows Elizabeth, a black high school girl, dressed in white, walking in front of Little Rock Central High School, while Hazel, a white girl standing directly behind her, face twisted in hate, screams racial epithets. In Elizabeth and Hazel: Two Women of Little Rock Margolick tells the story behind the photograph, which captures an epic moment in the civil rights movement.


David Margolick

Comments [4]

american by choice from new jersey

now the same ate is directed at Muslims; some people must have an enemy otherwise they feel incomplete.

Dec. 21 2011 05:05 PM
Prof. Robert L. Hodge, Jr., J.D. from Criminal Justice Dept., Nassau Comm. College

As the former Legal Redress Chairman of the Long Island NAACP from 1976 to 1984, this photo brings back many mixed memories to me: happiness over some of the positive racial progress we have made here in America, sadness over the hidden and sometimes virulent racism still present right here on Long Island and joy at the very thought that we are living in the age where the seemingly impossible has happened: an African American is President of America.

I try to keep hope alive that real progress in the area of racism is still possible and perhaps even inevitable here in America!
Prof. Robert L. Hodge, Jr., J.D.

Dec. 21 2011 01:32 PM
Richard from New York

Extraordinary. Thank you. and thank you, Elizabeth.

Dec. 21 2011 01:27 PM
kitov from Jersey City, NJ

This incident is one of the most emotionally affecting moments of civil rights history. Elizabeth Eckford, only 15 years old, wound u on her own, the object of a mob whose hate was literally overwhelming. God knows what might have happened to her as she tried to make her way home, but for the intervention of an ordinary (white) housewife who stood by Elizabeth and stood up to the mob, helping her get onto a bus and to safety. Elizabeth deserves recognition as one the many wounded heroes of that movement. I am so glad to hear of Hazel and Elizabeth's reconciliation, and would love to hear more of that righteous woman who stepped out of the crowd.

Dec. 21 2011 01:24 PM

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