A Guide to the Barbara Jordan Papers, 1975-2009
Barbara Charline Jordan was born on February 21, 1936, in Houston, Texas. She attended Houston's segregated public schools and graduated magna cum laude with debating honors from the all-black Texas Southern University. She earned her law degree from Boston University in 1959 and served as an attorney in Houston.
In 1966, Ms. Jordan was elected as the first black state Senator in Texas, and she went on to be the first woman and first black elected to Congress from Texas. She was the first black woman to deliver a keynote address at the Democratic National Convention, in 1976. She retired from the House in 1979 to teach political ethics at the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin.
Ms. Jordan had multiple sclerosis, and died from viral pneumonia as a complication of leukemia at the age of 59, on January 18, 1996.
New York Times Obituary of Barbara Jordan, accessed September 27, 2016
The Barbara Jordan Papers, 1975-2009, contain a note from Barbara Jordan to Nancy Earl written in 1975 that accompanies the book An Inquiry into the Human Prospect by Robert L. Heilbroner; a letter from Ms. Jordan to Mildred Thorp of May 1988; a framed set of Eleanor Roosevelt stamps from the first day of issue, October 11, 1984; and a program, placards, and a sketch signed by sculptor Bruce Wolfe from the unveiling and dedication of the Barbara Jordan statue on the UT campus on April 24, 2009. Additionally, the papers pertain to the Barbara Jordan memorial service held on January 28, 1996, including a clipping from On Campus, January 30, 1996, and a CD recording of the service, duplicated from audio cassettes places in the archives by the UT Office of the Associate Vice President for Administration and Public Affairs.
This collection is open for research use.
Barbara Jordan Papers, 1975-2009, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.
This collection was processed by Evan Hocker, 2008.
Subsequent revisions were made by Jessi Fishman, September 2016.
Detailed Description of the Papers