This photo was taken in 1979 shortly after Nelson and The SC began living together.  We were married in 1980; our marriage would have been illegal in Colorado before 1957.  I was wearing a 1940’s dress (manufactured before the 1957 timeline) that he gave me and he was wearing a vintage scarf that I gave him.  Perfect for the dance floor!  Giving each other gifts throughout the decades was one of life’s true pleasures. The MLK Holiday went into effect in 1986, so this image preceded the years that we spent on this day honoring the civil rights activist who was responsible for countless changes that affected the global community and our personal lives.  Nelson grew up in a segregated school system until he entered high school and had many stories to tell.  We would celebrate this holiday in quiet reflection, usually listening to MLK speeches on the radio and reading, after going out for a late breakfast.  How fortunate am I to have deeply rich memories of this holiday that had personal meaning and significance.

A few of the hundreds of books that have permanent residence in our family library.

22 Comments

  1. I feel quite honored to be the first to comment on your blog post, with that nostalgic photo of you and Nelson. 1979 was the year I met Gorgeous Husband, although it took many years before we married.

    It seems unbelievable that your marriage would have been illegal at one time! And, really this is still very recent history. You were so blessed to find each other when you did.

    We are both on the blog, http://www.thatsnotmyage today with our “dresses with sleeves.” I consider myself to be very honored to be in such good company! So I mentioned it in my blog. Wow! This time last year I didn’t even have a blog, nor know about all these fabulously stylish women!!

    Much love from England,
    Rose

  2. What a beautiful photo of the two of you. I still get chills listening to Martin Luther King Jr’s speeches. And that Angela Davis book looks fascinating, am adding to my list.

  3. What a great photograph. Husband and I were discussing all the changes in our personal world since the MLK holiday became official. I strongly feel that many of the troubles that exist in our culture today would not have occurred if Dr. King had lived. Always inspired by his speeches, we reflect on the good things. thanks for sharing.

  4. I love this day. So much to remember. And last night on PBS WORLD Channel their series called Independent Lens and it is a five part series on Apartheid. I saw three sections last night. A lot I was too young to know. But a year later I read everything I could about what Steven Biko was doing. To see it last night, with so many pictures that I saw in the paper at the time, was giving me even more of the international response. I carry Biko in my heart as I do MLK.

  5. I’m fortunate to have the holiday off work, and each year I make it a day of community service in memory of Dr. King. I find it meaningful to reflect on the changes the Civil Rights movement and it’s many activists initiated, and I also use it as a time to note continuing injustices, which are many. Today I am especially thinking about inequities in healthcare access and educational attainment, and I long for legalization of same-sex marriage in my state and across our nation so that my relationship with my partner could be formally recognized. — Thanks for sharing a photo of you and Nelson from “back in the day.” It’s a treat to see the two of you as young lovers just beginning your life together.

  6. Thank you for sharing that beautiful photo of you and Nelson. And that your marriage would have been illegal just 22 years earlier is so shocking. Yes! That still shocks and angers me. But I love to see you two together. And I love to listen today to Dr. King’s speeches.

  7. My husband and I often discuss this. We were both born in 1954, the year of Brown vs. the Topeka Board of Education decision. Until I was a senior in high school, there were no African Americans in my classes. At MU-Columbia where I started college, the Alpha Kappa Alpha girls boarded in my dorm. THEY taught me how to dance and I have many fine memories of Al Greene crooning. Just over the Christmas holidays, we visited Little Rock and Central High. It took a thousand troops every day for an entire school year to make certain that those students could attend an “integrated” public school. The struggle continues…

  8. Hello dear Judith, It is indeed horrifying to me that two people in love cannot be together. You both must have been so grateful for the 30 years spent together and the undying love you had for each other. What a beautiful photo of the two of you together:))) xoxoxoxo

  9. Judith, that is a lovely photo of you and Nelson, I love it that you exchanged clothing gifts, ideas, and dances. A rich and loving and long relationship.

    I too used to listen to MLK speeches, don’t why I stopped, perhaps we’ll put on some of those old LPs later today. I did buy a needle so we could play our old records whenever we want.

  10. Hi Judith,

    Touching photo of you and Nelson, i am so pleased that you are sharing this pic with us.
    This something else to think that your wedding would have been illegal before 1957!
    MLK was a great man!

    You know ,looking at the pic it seems you didnot change much

    Take care,

    Ariane. – i am always looking forward to your posts!

  11. It’s so hard to believe that prejudice like this existed in such recent history. I’m so glad the love you shard overcame all that! The two of you look sooooo sweet and happy in this picture! Many hugs to you! ~Serene

  12. How sweet to see the two of you together like this. Beautiful couple! Wish I had known you both back then. Excited to read the Angela Davis book, how have I not encountered that yet? Thank you!

    So wrong to realize how your partnership would have been forbidden. How crazy that seems now…Thank God for Dr King and all he stood for and inspired so many to do for positive and powerful change in this country. Still, I am reminded today how much work remains to be done – let us all keep on keeping on!

    Thank you Judith – and not just with this post – for the reminders of LIVING your deepest values –

    XOXO
    Janine

  13. I have live in Southern California all my life. It’s pretty common place to see interracial marriages. It just seems so wierd that at one time it was illegal. I just can’t fathom it. I love the pictures with you and Nelson.

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