Firsts for Newark Women

National Firsts

First woman:

First African American woman:

First African American:


State Firsts

First woman in NJ:

First African American in NJ:

First African American Woman in NJ:

County Firsts

First woman In Essex County:

First African American Woman in Essex County:


Newark Firsts

First Woman in In Newark

First African American woman in Newark:

First African American in Newark:


First Hispanic Woman in Newark:


Tentative Timeline of Black Teachers in Newark

1909 Colored school closed. Assistants Grace Fenderson, Mae Mulford, Olive Matthews and Emily B Thomas remain in system. By 1930 Matthews and Thomas have died.

Before 1920? Helen A. Miller is listed as a teacher on the census from 1920. More information needed for an entry but mentioned in her sisters entry.

c. 1923/24 Carrie Epps Powell is hired (according to 1964 article she’d been working 39 years)

c.1928 Mildred Williams hired (Teacher on 1930 census Public Schools and Star Ledger 1958 obit says for 30 years)

1934 Pansy Borders hired as social worker

1936 Gladys Francis is hired, according to her obit

In State reports in the 1930s it is started there are 6-7 Black teachers in Newark. In 1939, the Newark Herald states eight.

1943-1945 The Newark Herald states that “scores” of Black teachers have been hired in the past two years: Dorica Saunders, Gwendolyn Harrell (later East, from Montclair, moved to San Diego), Rose Wood (lived in NYC), Blanche Hoggard (33 yrs NPS, born and died OK, died 1997), Ethel Tate (b. NY, died 1986, mother of prosecutor, 30 yrs Morton St School), Ruby Brown, Mary Colson, Alma Flagg, Mary Womble, Dorothy Turpin, Jennie Jackson. Also permanent subs (no Black teachers could be hired in High Schools yet): Katherine Bell, Dorothy Gould, Alberta Banks, Tina Bohannan, Olga Russell (born Alabama, d. 1993 Newark, no obit found) and Richardson