Top of page

Exhibition Rosa Parks: In Her Own Words

Blue geometric pattern dress with center zipper front. Hand sewn dress, n.d. Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture (037.00.00)

Rosa’s Self-Designed Dress

Rosa Parks received her first sewing lessons from her mother and maternal grandmother, who made quilts. The Montgomery Industrial School for Girls provided formal training. She was employed as a tailor’s assistant and a seamstress. She also sewed at home for private clients, family members, and herself.