Seventy years ago, in February 1948, the University of Arkansas became the first major public university in the South to voluntarily admit a black student without a lawsuit. Silas Hunt was the first of “Six Pioneers” that desegregated the university. The others were Wiley Branton, who later became Dean of the Law School at Howard University in Washington, D.C.; George Haley, who later became one of the first blacks elected to the Kansas Senate; George Howard, who later became the first black person appointed to the Arkansas Supreme Court; Christopher C. Mercer, who later became a field secretary for the NAACP during the 1957 Little Rock school crisis; and Jackie Shropshire, who later moved to Gary, Indiana, where he played an influential role in the city’s law and politics.
The "Six Pioneers" @ UofA
By John Kirk • Jan 9, 2018