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Sun Feb 9, 2020, 08:07 PM

Alice Allison Dunnigan -- Teacher, Journalist, Civil rights activist

Alice Allison Dunnigan

Alice Allison Dunnigan (April 27, 1906 – May 6, 1983) was an African-American journalist, civil rights activist and author. Dunnigan was the first African-American female correspondent to receive White House credentials, and the first black female member of the Senate and House of Representatives press galleries. She wrote an autobiography entitled Alice A. Dunnigan: A Black Woman's Experience. She also has a Kentucky State Historical Commission marker dedicated to her.

Alice chronicled the decline of Jim Crow during the 1940s and 1950s, which influenced her to become a civil rights activist. She was inducted into the Kentucky Hall of Fame in 1982.

During her time as a reporter, she became the first black journalist to accompany a president while traveling, covering Harry S. Truman's 1948 campaign trip.

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As a writer for the Associated Negro Press news service, Dunnigan sought press credentials to cover Congress and the Senate. The Standing Committee of Correspondents (newspaper reporters who ran the congressional press galleries) denied her request on the grounds that she was writing for a weekly newspaper, and reporters covering the U.S. Capitol were required to write for daily publications. Six months later, however, she was granted press clearance, becoming the first African-American woman to gain accreditation. In 1947 she was named bureau chief of the Associate Negro Press, a position she held for 14 years.

In 1948 Dunnigan was one of three African Americans and one of two women in the press corps that followed President Harry S. Truman's Western campaign, paying her own way to do it. Also that year, she became the first African-American female White House correspondent, and was the first black woman elected to the Women's National Press Club. Her association with this and other organizations allowed her to travel extensively in the United States and to Canada, Israel, South America, Africa, Mexico, and the Caribbean. She was honored by Haitian President François Duvalier for her articles on Haiti.

During her years covering the White House, Dunnigan suffered many of the racial indignities of the time, but also earned a reputation as a hard-hitting reporter. She was barred from entering certain establishments to cover President Eisenhower, and had to sit with the servants to cover Senator Taft's funeral. When she attended formal White House functions, she was mistaken for the wife of a visiting dignitary; no one could imagine a black woman attending such an event on her own. During Eisenhower's two administrations, the president resorted first to not calling on her and later to asking for her questions beforehand because she was known to ask such difficult questions, often about race. No other member of the press corps was required to submit their questions before a press conference, and Dunnigan refused. When Kennedy took office, he welcomed Dunnigan's tough questions and answered them frankly.

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Determined journalists make a difference.

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Reply Alice Allison Dunnigan -- Teacher, Journalist, Civil rights activist (Original post)
Hermit-The-Prog Feb 9 OP
handmade34 Feb 9 #1
abqtommy Feb 9 #2
Hermit-The-Prog Monday #3

Response to Hermit-The-Prog (Original post)

Sun Feb 9, 2020, 09:05 PM

1. I am thankful for

our journalists, reporters, researchers, everyday... we would be in the dark without them

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Response to Hermit-The-Prog (Original post)

Sun Feb 9, 2020, 09:12 PM

2. Thanks for bringing this remarkable woman into the orbit of my consciousness.

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Response to Hermit-The-Prog (Original post)

Mon Feb 10, 2020, 02:10 AM

3. kick for nightowls

Kentucky is the red-assed state, but individuals rise above it.

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