The first African American woman to graduate from the University of Texas School of Law, Gloria Bradford entered law school in 1951 and graduated with her LL.B. in 1954. After graduation, she practiced civil and criminal law with the Houston firm of Dent, Ford, King, and Wickliff. In October 1954, Ms. Bradford became the first African American woman to try a case in a Harris County district court. The Law School’s Bradford Society is named in her honor.
Ms. Bradford visited the Law School in 2006 at which time she participated in an oral history. Ms. Bradford’s remembrances include her experiences at the University of Texas School of Law, her friendship with Charlye Ola Farris, the first African American woman to pass the Texas bar, and notable figures she met as a law student and lawyer.
Gloria Bradford’s oral history is freely available as a pdf through Tarlton Law Library’s Rare Books and Special Collections department. The purpose of Tarlton’s oral history series is to document the history of the Law School, its faculty and alumni. We hope that this oral history will provide today’s students with insight into the issues faced by African American law students and lawyers in the 1950s.