1939 July 22

Jane Bolin, First African-American Female Judge in the U.S., Sworn In


Jane Bolin became the first African-American woman to serve as a judge in the United States when, on this day, New York Mayor Fiorello La Guardia swore her in to serve on the New York City Domestic Relations Court (later renamed the Family Court).

Bolin was also the first African-American woman to graduate from Yale Law School and the first to join the New York City Bar Association.

Learn more about Jane Bolin here.

Read: Jacqueline A. McLeod, Daughter of the Empire State: The Life of Judge Jane Bolin (2011)

Learn more about African American history: Henry Louis Gates, Life Upon These Shores: Looking at African American History, 1513-2008 (2011)

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