Authors and Characters Speaker Series

Dr. Douglas Bristol, Associate Professor of HistoryOn Tuesday, February 18 at 11:45 a.m, Dr. Douglas Bristol, associate professor of history at The University of Southern Mississippi, will present "Court-Martial at Fort Devens, Massachusetts: WACS and Racial Discrimination in the North during World War II" at the Bay St. Louis Library.

Dr. Bristol's talk examines why African Americans had to fight for the right to serve their country during World War II.  At Fort Devens, Massachusetts, black nurses serving in the Women's Army Corps went on strike when white officers refused to allow them to take care of patients, assigning them janitorial duties instead.  Two of these women felt so strongly about their right to serve that they were willing to endure a court-martial.  The surprising outcome of that trial reveals that the seeds of changes had been planted.