Melba Patillo Beals, Member of 'Little Rock Nine' to Speak at SSU September 27

Posted by Pamela Van Halsema on September 10, 2012 10:24 AM


Sonoma State welcomes Melba Pattillo Beals to campus on September 27, 7:00 PM in the Cooperage.  Beals is a journalist and member of the Little Rock Nine, a group of African-American students who were the first to integrate Central High in Little Rock, Arkansas. Beals' book Warriors Don't Cry chronicles the events of 1957 during the Little Rock crisis, based partly on diaries she kept during that period. She also wrote White is a State of Mind, which begins where Warriors left off. 

In 1958, the NAACP awarded the Spingarn Medal to Beals and to the other members of the Little Rock Nine, together with civil rights leader Daisy Bates, who had advised the group during their struggles at Central High. In 1999, she and the rest of the Nine were awarded the highest civilian honor, the Congressional Gold Medal. Only three hundred others have received this. Beals will be discussing her book and experiences.

This events is free, but you need a ticket to attend. Stop by the SSU Student Union Box Office to get a ticket. Tickets will be available to select freshman classes this week, and opened up to the community starting Monday, September 17.

Check out a clip here about Beals and how she grew to love learning, books and libraries: