Women’s History: April 9

9 Apr

Honoring Marian Anderson

Although Marian Anderson was one of the best known contraltos in the 20th Century, she did not have an easy time securing venues for her amazingly beautiful instrument. All during Anderson’s career and lifetime, America was a very race torn and divided country, not like today, cough cough cough!  In 1939, the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) refused permission for Anderson to sing to an integrated audience.  I can just see Michele Bachmann again saying, ” we need to remember that all of us came here to be free,” and Marian Anderson looking at her saying, “Excuse me?”

With the help of President and First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, Marian Anderson performed her critically acclaimed open-air concert on Easter Sunday, in 1939 on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. Anderson would spend the rest of her life breaking down barriers for both women and blacks.

While Antonin Scalia and Rand Paul will hate the introductory comments from President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, they are certainly germane right now.  I hope you enjoy the video of the recording of Marian Anderson. Click here to hear FDR’s introduction and Anderson’s performance.

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