Prudence Crandall: Teacher for Equal Rights (On My Own by Eileen Lucas

By Eileen Lucas

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C. Booker T. Washington, a former slave, founded the Tuskegee Institute for black students in 1881. Hearing about these accomplishments made Prudence proud. Prudence died in 1890. Many of her former students carried on her work. Some, including Sarah Harris, became teachers who taught black students. Great strides had been made. Still, black students often had fewer and older books than white students. Teachers in black schools worked under diff icult conditions. S. Supreme Court outlawed separate schools for black students and white students.

When Calvin asked Prudence to marry him, she said yes. Prudence and Calvin were married after her last trial. With much to be done at the school, there was no time for a wedding trip. Prudence returned to teaching. 41 September 9, 1834 One night, Prudence and her students woke to the sound of glass shattering. Men with clubs and iron bars were smashing many of the school’s windows. Some men crawled through the windows and broke furniture. Nothing this bad had happened before. Prudence was afraid that next time they would hurt the girls.

May 1833—Connecticut passes the Black Law. June 1833—Prudence is arrested. August 1833—Prudence stands for her f irst trial. October 1833—The second trial takes place. January 1834—A f ire damages the boarding school. July 1834—The third trial takes place. The judges dismiss Prudence’s case. August 1834—Prudence marries Calvin Philleo. September 1834—Men attack the boarding school and cause severe damage. Prudence decides to close the school. 1838—The Black Law is repealed. 1886—Connecticut promises to pay Prudence a pension.

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