Delilah W. Pierce Helped In Fight For Federal Aid To Education Bill

President Harry Truman was the President of the United States from 1945 to 1953, a time of grand expectations in post WWII America. He succeeded President Franklin D. Roosevelt after he died. President Truman had big shoes to fill after President Roosevelt’s historic New Deal. One of those shoes to fill was America’s changing culture and an increased sense of expectations. Some of those expectations included an increase in funding for public education. Many education advocates at the time felt as if public education needed increased funding in order to prepare all Americans for post WWII life. Though President Truman supported President Roosevelt’s New Deal, during his presidency he was a fiscal conservative who questioned federal involvement in state education and thought that his presidency was not a time for “experiments.” According to President Truman:

When I say I am opposed to Federal control of the schools, I mean I am opposed to control by any officer or department of the Federal Government, whether it be the United States Office of Education, the Federal Security Agency, or any other bureau or official. I, therefore, do not understand how the relationship between any of these offices or agencies is of any relevance to the problem of keeping the schools of America free of Federal control. (Harry S. Truman Library & Museum). 

Delilah W. Pierce was the chairman of public affairs for the National Sorority of Phi Delta Kappa at the time and is on record, according to the National Education Association of the United States, as asking the 81st Congress to pass an adequate federal-aid-to-education bill. Delilah W. Pierce and Phi Delta Kappa:

[F]avored federal aid to education under state and local control, to assist the states in…equalizing educational opportunity for all the youth of our nation regardless of race or creed.

Learn more about: Today’s Education, Volume 39.

81st Congress January 3, 1949 –  January 3, 1951
81st Congress
January 3, 1949 –
January 3, 1951

Delilah W. Pierce Mentioned In Recent Martha’s Vineyard Magazine Article

Zita Cousens is the owner of the Cousen Rose Gallery located in Oak Bluffs, MA on the famed Circuit Avenue. Ms. Cousens was recently interviewed by the Martha’s Vineyard Magazine. In her article she discusses how Delilah W. Pierce and her dear friend Lois Mailou Jones, artist were among the first exhibitors. Please read her article: Zita Cousens: Her Oak Bluffs gallery is in its thirtieth year and going strong. Delilah held exhibitions their from 1980 to 1992. She was very involved in the Martha’s Vineyard art community, holding exhibitions from 1960 to 1992 at the Cousen Rose and Old Sculpin galleries to name a few. Delilah W. Pierce and her family have vacationed on Martha’s Vineyard for 5 generations.

To view more about Delilah W. Pierce and the history of African Americans on Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket please view: African-Americans on Martha’s Vineyard & Nantucket. The book was authored by Robert C. and Karen E. Hayden, and published by Select Publications and the University of Wisconsin – Madison, 1999.

 

Also View:

Cousen Rose Gallery, Oak Bluffs, MA Martha's Vineyard
Cousen Rose Gallery, Oak Bluffs, MA
Martha’s Vineyard

Delilah W. Pierce Participates In District of Columbia Appropriation Bill For 1941 Hearings Before The Subcommittee Of The Committee On Appropriations United States Senate

As a member of the Phi Delta Kappa Sorority, Delilah W. Pierce fought so that Washington, DC and all underserved school districts, including rural districts, could receive appropriate funding for public education.

Learn more about the: District of Columbia Appropriation Bill For 1941 Hearings Before The Subcommittee Of The Committee On Appropriations United States Senate.

District of Columbia Appropriation Bill For 1941 Hearings Before The Subcommittee Of The Committee On Appropriations United States Senate
District of Columbia Appropriation Bill For 1941

Delilah W. Pierce Highlighted In Pearlie’s Prattle

Delilah W. Pierce and her life with Joseph Pierce highlighted in The Afro American’s column Pearlie’s Prattle.

Learn more by reading: Pearlie’s Prattle.

Delilah W Pierce Highlighted In Perlies Prattle, The Afro American, 1952.
Delilah W Pierce Highlighted In Perlies Prattle, The Afro American, 1952.

In 1937 Phi Delta Kappa Selected Delilah W. Pierce As Head Of National Sorority

According to The Afro American, Delilah W. Pierce was selected as the head of Phi Delta Kappa. Delilah was very active in her sorority and believed that education was the key to progress.

Click to read the article: Phi Delts Select.

Delilah W Pierce Selected As Phi Delta Kappa Head, 1937
Delilah W Pierce Selected As Phi Delta Kappa Head, 1937

Delilah W. Pierce Helped Promote Hooks & Porter Exhibit At Howard University

In the December 26, 1957 issue of Jet Magazine Delilah W. Pierce helped promote Earl Hooks’ and James A. Porter’s painting and ceramic exhibit at Howard University.

James A. Porter was the head of Howard’s art department at the time and the director of Howard’s art gallery. Mr. Porter would go on to receive the Lady Bird Johnson award for being one of the best art teachers in the nation.

Earl Hooks at the time was a new comer and a teacher in Washington, DC. Mr. Hooks went on to chair the art department at Fisk University.

Click to view Jet Magazine’s article: View Art Exhibit.

Jet Magazine 1957
Jet Magazine 1957

Delilah W. Pierce In Jet Magazine 1957
Delilah W. Pierce In Jet Magazine 1957

Delilah W. Pierce Hosted Phi Delta Kappa Meeting In The Gold Coast

Delilah W. Pierce hosted a planning meeting of the Phi Delta Kappa sorority at her home in the Washington, DC Gold Coast – A nickname for the community of Washington, DC’s African American elite. At the time, the president was Mr. Olivia Henry, educator and fierce advocate for African American young people understanding the importance of education.

Click to view: Mrs. Henry Aids Conclave Plans.

Learn more about the Gold Coast: North Portal Estates and Crestwood (Washington, DC).

Mrs. Olivia Henry's Phi Delta Kappa Conclave Plans
Mrs. Olivia Henry’s Phi Delta Kappa Conclave Plans

Delilah W. Pierce Attends Fellow Phi Delta Kappa Member Surprise Baby Shower

The June 12, 1937 issue of The Afro American mentions Delilah W. Pierce as attending the surprise baby shower of Gladys S. Roberts.  Delilah was very active in the Phi Delta Kappa Sorority.

Click to view: Ms. Gladys S. Roberts Surprised With Shower.

Mrs. Gladys S Roberts Surprised With Shower, June 12, 1937.
Mrs. Gladys S Roberts Surprised With Shower, June 12, 1937.

Delilah W. Pierce Attends Phi Delta Kappa Conclave In Chicago 1937

Delilah W. Pierce spent the holiday season attending the conclave of the Phi Delta Kappa Sorority, held in Chicago. It was promoted in The Afro American on January 9, 1937.

Click to view: Delilah W. Pierce Attends Chicago Phi Delta Kappa Conclave.

Phi Delta Kappa Conclave, Chicago, 1937.
Phi Delta Kappa Conclave, Chicago, 1937.

Delilah W. Pierce Among Alma Thomas’ Little Paris Group, 1948

Delilah W. Pierce and Alma Thomas were professional peers and friends. According to  the Smithsonian Institutes Archives of American Art their relationship was captured in the Alma Thomas papers, 1894-2001, in her Little Paris Group, 1948. The Little Paris Group, as described in the archives:

Met once a week with Miles Celine Tabary and Lois Jones, developing skills and styles circulating in at least six exhibition works a year. The annual exhibit was one of the highlights of the season, looked forward to the art lovers of the Washington community. (In the catalog of the District -Columbia Art Association, Exhibition, on back of the forward page.) See Also: Michael Rosenfeld Gallery

Visit the Archives of American Art to learn more about: The Little Paris Group, 1948.

The Little Paris Group, 1948
The Little Paris Group, 1948