Monday, October 28, 2019

African-Canadian Legal History in the news

Kevin Bissett of Canadian Press has a poignant story about pioneer 19th century Afro-Canadian lawyer Abraham Walker of New Brunswick, who will be posthumously inducted into the Order of New Brunswick.
The local Black community circulated a petition in 1896 or 1897 to get Walker the designation of Queen’s Counsel.
“He was told that he would be getting it but when the local white lawyers found about it, they complained to the government and said ‘If you give him that designation then you can take ours back,’ — so he was dropped off the list,” [historian Peter] Little said.
It's de rigueur, I guess, to say stories like these have been "forgotten by history," (as here)  but Walker's DCB biography is here. Among other scholars, Barrington Walker of Queen's History department has covered Abraham Walker's experience in The African-Canadian Legal Odyssey and other works.
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