Marlene Laws grew up in Detroit and graduated from Sidney D. Miller High School in 1958. She served in the military at Fort Sam in Houston, Texas from 1960 to 1962. Upon returning to Michigan, she was a nurse at Pontiac State Hospital for two years. Laws dedicated 43 years of her career to the United States Postal Service as a clerk and then as a Human Resources specialist. She and her former husband Kenneth had one daughter, Dr. Dawn N. Laws. Marlene Laws passed away on February, 4, 2017.
Marlene Laws was interviewed in partnership with the Museum of African American History of Detroit and Y Arts Detroit in 2010 as part of the Legacies Project.
Katherine Dawkins was born in 1932 in the Black Bottom neighborhood in Detroit. She had two children as a teenager, and recalls how that impacted her relationships with friends and family. She married her second husband, James Dawkins, in 1963. She has held various jobs, including switchboard operator at the Gotham Hotel and customer service representative at Harper Recreation Bowling Alley and Henry Ford Hospital. Late in life, Dawkins was inspired to return to school and she received her GED at age 79.
Katherine Dawkins was interviewed in partnership with the Museum of African American History of Detroit and Y Arts Detroit in 2010 as part of the Legacies Project.
Anna Noble was born in the early 1920s and grew up in Pittsburgh with 11 siblings. She worked as a launderer as a young woman. She applied to several nursing schools, but faced discrimination due to segregation. She attended Mercy Douglass School of Nursing in Philadelphia, which was an all-Black nursing school. In 1950, Noble moved to Detroit to take a nursing position at Haynes Memorial Hospital. She became the director of nursing at DMC Harper University Hospital, where she worked for 23 years. Later in life, she volunteered at the Lula Belle Stewart Center, which offered parenting assistance to single mothers.
Anna Noble was interviewed in partnership with the Museum of African American History of Detroit and Y Arts Detroit in 2010 as part of the Legacies Project.