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Verda Welcome interview


Verda Mae Freeman Welcome (1907-1990) was a public school teacher, civil rights activist, and one of the first Black women to be elected to a state Senate in the United States. In 1929 Welcome moved to Baltimore, Maryland, from North Carolina, and from 1934 to 1945 she taught in the Baltimore City public school system. She received a bachelor's degree in history from Morgan State College in 1939 and in 1943 she completed a master's degree in history at New York University. In 1962 Welcome was elected to the Maryland State Senate and she worked to pass legislation which discouraged racial discrimination. In this oral history interview, Welcome primarily discusses the direction of the civil rights movement in Maryland under Lillie May Carroll Jackson. Other topics of discussion include picketing for integration at the Gwynn Oak Amusement Park, factions in the Black community, and the relationship between the Black and Jewish populations in Baltimore.




Contributor(s) Notes

Narrator: Verda F. Welcome
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 8145


Audio: 95 minutes
Transcript: 37 pages

Catalog Number

OH 8145

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.