He married Mr. Marshall as his second wife. Vivian (Burey) Marshall, died of lung cancer at 44 meant that you had to cross an even larger barrier, particularly after Walter White, the head of The N.A.A.C.P. was Black and divorced his Black wife to get married to a white woman.
Interracial marriage is possible “practically broke up the whole organization,” Mrs. Marshall was interviewed for the interview Civil Rights History Project 2013.
“And so when Thurgood proposed, I said, ‘No way,’ because a lot of people still considered me as a foreigner,” She spoke. “Hawaii wasn’t too familiar to people then. But he insisted.” (They overcame a second gap: He was 6-foot-2, she was 4-foot-11.
Roy Wilkins was then the executive Director of Presided over by the N.A.A.C.P. at The wedding at the historic St. Philip’s Episcopal Church in Harlem. (Mrs. Marshall had been the private secretary to the N.A.A.C.P.’s former deputy executive director, Dr. Gloster B. Current.)
She had taken night courses in stenography at Columbia University Because of According to her, her dark skin was the reason a clerk at an employment office referred her for the N.A.A.C.P. Washington Her first assignment was picketing a cinema showing the racist epic film. “The Birth of a Nation.” (The theater cancelled the show.
She was also with defense lawyers during sometimes difficult assignments to the South during the civil right movement.
“I remember riding in one car with Thurgood, and one of the branch members says, ‘Judge, open up that glove compartment,’” She recalled the oral history. “And he opened it up. He says, ‘You see? There’s a Bible there, and there’s a gun there.’ He says, ‘We use the Bible first. If that doesn’t work, we use the gun.’”