#TBT: They Died in the Closet | Advocate.com

When Barbara Jordan died of complications from pneumonia on January 17, 1996, she became the first black woman buried in the Texas State Cemetery — and likely the first lesbian, though her 30-year relationship with partner #TBT: They Died in the Closet | Advocate.comNancy Earl wasn’t publicly acknowledged until Jordan’s obituary ran in the Houston Chronicle. A great civil rights leader and progressive politician who grew up in segregated Houston, Jordan was the first woman to serve in the House of Representatives in Texas in her own right in 1972 and the first African-American in that state’s Senate after Reconstruction. In 1974 she was introduced to national audiences delivering a landmark speech on TV in favor of impeaching President Nixon, and in 1976 she was shortlisted as a possible running mate for Jimmy Carter. That didn’t pan out, but she did become the first black woman to deliver the Democratic National Convention’s keynote address. She battled multiple sclerosis and later leukemia, leading her to move out of politics, but Jordan stayed active in progressive causes long after she left elected office, chairing the U.S. Commission on Immigration Reform until her death.

via #TBT: They Died in the Closet | Advocate.com.

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