Hamline News

Biography of Alumna Anna Arnold Hedgeman Published

Alumna Anna Arnold Hedgeman led an impressive life as a civil rights activist and an educator. Even before her many accomplishments in civil rights, Hedgeman was the first African American graduate of Hamline University in 1922. To honor her life and dedication to equality, author Jennifer Scanlon published the first biography on Hedgeman called Until There is Justice, which was recently reviewed by the The New York Times.

As the biography tells the story of Hedgeman’s life, from growing up in Anoka, Minnesota to helping organize the March on Washington, it shows how she developed her complex understanding of equality. Chapters are dedicated to her education, teaching under Jim Crow laws, her struggle for workplace justice, her work on Harry Truman's presidential campaign, the March at Washington, her retirement as a consultant, and her legacy. Scanlon’s thorough investigation into Hedgeman’s life shows a new perspective on feminism and the civil rights movement.

In addition to the new biography, Hedgeman was honored by the Minnesota Women's Consortium as part of Black History Month. Her legacy also lives on at Hamline University through the work of The Hedgeman Center for Student Diversity Initiatives.