Thursday, April 27, 2017

Birth Dates of Notable Kentuckians: April 27, 1906 - Alice Allison Dunnigan

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From The Kentucky Encyclopedia -
Alice (Allison) Dunnigan, journalist and civil rights leader, was born April 27, 1906, near Russellville, Kentucky, to Willie and Lena (Pittman) Allison. She graduated from the two-year Knob City High School and attended Kentucky State University in Frankfort. She taught in local rural schools and continued her education during vacations. Alice Allison married Charles Dunnigan in December 1931; they had one son, Robert. In 1942 Dunnigan went to work at the U.S. Labor Department in Washington, D.C., where she started her lifelong fight against discrimination.

Dunnigan became a reporter for the Associated Negro Press and in August 1947 was accredited to cover presidential press conferences. In the 1940s she reported the early Washington, D.C., sit-ins to desegregate restaurants. Dunnigan gained greater access for black journalists at even the highest level of government. As a reporter she came to know four presidents. The first black journalist to accompany a U.S. president when traveling, she covered Harry S. Truman's 1948 campaign trip up the West Coast. In the 1960s she was a member of the President's Committee on Equal Opportunity under both John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson. Dunnigan was a world traveler, a well-known speaker, and a leader in the civil rights movement. She was inducted into the Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame in 1982. For a time, she wrote a weekly column for the Louisville Defender on the achievements of Kentucky blacks. Her book The Fascinating Story of Black Kentuckians: Their Heritage and Traditions was published in 1982. She died May 6, 1983, and was buried in Maryland National Memorial Park.


Selected Sources from UK Libraries:

Dunnigan, Alice Allison. The Fascinating Story of Black Kentuckians : Their Heritage and Traditions. Washington, D.C.: Associated, 1982. Print.
E185.93.K3 D86 1982, Young Library - 4th Floor

Dunnigan, Alice Allison. A Black Woman's Experience : From Schoolhouse to White House. Philadelphia: Dorrance, 1974. Print.
B D9223bl, Special Collections Research Center - Biography Collection

Hill, Ruth Edmonds., and Arthur Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America. The Black Women Oral History Project : From the Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America, Radcliffe College. Westport, CT: Meckler, 1991. Print.
 E185.86 .B454 1991, Young Library - 4th Floor

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