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Donald Murray interview


Donald Gaines Murray (1914-1986) was an attorney and the first Black individual admitted to the University of Maryland School of Law after winning a landmark civil rights case, Murray v. Pearson, in 1936. After his application was rejected on account of his race, Murray and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) sued the University. Murray was represented in court by Charles Hamilton Houston and Thurgood Marshall. In this oral history interview, Murray recalls his fight to enter the University of Maryland Law School as well as other education legal cases such as Esther McCready's attempt to enroll in the University of Maryland Nursing School. Murray also discusses the leadership skills of freedom fighter Lillie May Carroll Jackson and the selection of Baltimore, Maryland as a target city by the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE).




Contributor(s) Notes

Narrator: Donald Gaines Murray
Interviewer: Ellen Paul

Production Note

The McKeldin-Jackson Project was an effort to examine the Maryland civil rights movement of the mid-20th century through the medium of oral history by focusing on the roles played by pioneering freedom fighter Lillie May Carroll Jackson and Theodore R. McKeldin, who was Mayor of Baltimore (1943-1947, 1963-1967), Governor of Maryland (1951-1959), and an advocate for civil rights. The project was sponsored by the Maryland Historical Society and was supported in part by a grant from the Maryland Committee for the Humanities and Public Policy.


Object ID

OH 8139


Audio: 45 minutes
Transcript: 17 pages

Catalog Number

OH 8139

Resource ID


Digital Publisher

Digital resource provided by the Maryland Center for History and Culture


This digital material is made available here for private study, scholarship, and research. Commercial and other uses are prohibited without the permission of the Maryland Center for History and Culture. For more information, visit the MCHC’s Reproductions and Permissions web page.