Irene Morgan marker to be unveiled Feb. 1 at Hayes

- Posted on Jan 08, 2020 - 07:06 PM

Photo: Irene Morgan

Irene Morgan

A state historical marker commemorating the start of Irene Morgan’s 1944 Greyhound bus ride that resulted in the desegregation of interstate travel will be held at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Feb. 1, at Hayes.

The marker is being placed at the intersection of Hook Road and Route 17 in Hayes.

On July 16, 1944, Morgan, an African-American woman, was returning home to Baltimore after visiting her mother in Gloucester. She boarded the bus at Hayes and, around 25 miles north of where she got on, was ordered by the bus driver to give up her seat so that white passengers could sit.

Refusing to comply, she was arrested and jailed in Saluda. Her case reached the U.S. Supreme Court, which decided in Morgan v. Virginia (1946) that laws requiring the segregation of passengers in interstate transportation were unconstitutional. Morgan took her stand 11 years before Rosa Parks in Montgomery, Alabama.

The program for the Feb. 1 dedication is being planned by the Friends of the Gloucester Museum of History and its Black History Committee.