April 21, 2017 Author Will Discuss Young People's Book on Famous Interracial Marriage Case

Jonah S. Eskin Memorial Program to Be Held May 3

Press Contact: Jennifer Gavin (202) 707-1940
Public Contact: Center for the Book (202) 707-5221
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The author of a book for young people about a famous legal case that cleared the way for interracial marriage in the United States will speak at the Library of Congress on May 3, as this year’s Jonah S. Eskin Memorial Program.

Patricia Hruby Powell will speak about her new book, “Loving vs. Virginia,” which features illustrations by Shadra Strickland. Powell will lead a program focused on the book at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday, May 3,. in the Library’s Coolidge Auditorium, on the ground floor of the Library’s Thomas Jefferson Building, 10 First St. S.E. in Washington, D.C.  The program is free and open to the public; tickets are not needed. Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis.

As late as 1967, marrying someone not of the same race was deemed a crime in some states. Interracial unions, such as that of Richard and Mildred Loving of Virginia, were forbidden there, and they were each sentenced to a year in prison in 1959. The sentence was suspended on condition that the Lovings leave Virginia.

They moved to the District of Columbia, where they had married, but wanted to return to Virginia. The American Civil Liberties Union took their case, which ended with a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that so-called “anti-miscegenation” laws were illegal.

The event is supported by the Jonah S. Eskin Memorial Fund of the Library of Congress. The fund was established to honor the late son of Marcia and Barnet Eskin.

Powell and Strickland will share primary sources used in research and original illustrations from the book. They will be joined in conversation by Georgetown law professor (emerita) and constitutional law expert Elizabeth Hayes Patterson, associate director of the Association of American Law Schools and by moderator Deborah Taylor, an award-winning librarian and director of School and Student Services at Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore.  The student audience will be invited to ask questions of the participants during the program.

The Library’s Center for the Book, established by Congress in 1977 to stimulate public interest in books and reading, is a national force for reading and literacy promotion. A public-private partnership, it sponsors educational programs that reach readers of all ages through its affiliated state centers and collaborations with nonprofit reading-promotion partners. For more information, visit read.gov.

The Library of Congress is the world’s largest library, offering access to the creative record of the United States—and extensive materials from around the world—both on site and online. It is the main research arm of the U.S. Congress and the home of the U.S. Copyright Office. Explore collections, reference services and other programs and plan a visit at loc.gov, access the official site for U.S. federal legislative information at congress.gov, and register creative works of authorship at copyright.gov.


PR 17-058
ISSN 0731-3527