People’s perception about interracial marriages has drastically changed in less than half a century. Interracial marriages were made legal in the United States of America just 43 years ago and since then it has gained recognition in various parts of the world. Interracial marriages have become fairly popular nowadays but the scenario was quite different earlier. Here is a list of individuals who didn’t let the preconceptions of society hinder their decisions.
- Pearl Bailey and Louie Bellson in 1952: Bellson was a part of Duke Ellington’s band and was introduced to Bailey by a trombone player. After a courtship period of just 4 days, they got married in London. It was Bellson’s first marriage and Bailey’s third. Interracial relationships were nothing close to acceptable during those times and even Bellson’s inclusion in the music group surprised many.
- Sammy Davis Jr. and May Britt in 1960: Interracial marriages were forbidden in 31 out of 50 states in 1960. During the event where John F. Kennedy was appointed as the Presidential nominee earlier that year, Davis was booed at by the white southern delegates because he had engaged a white woman. However, he did not pay heed to such remarks and went on to marry Britt.
- George Schuyler and Josephine Cogdell in 1928: George was an author, satirist and a journalist. On the other hand, Josephine was an actress and belonged to a wealthy family. Josephine was fascinated by radical policies and new ideas and started to interrelate with George, who was a very controversial journalist in those days. When they both met in New York, they fell in love instantly. The couple believed that their marriage would mark an end to several social problems in the United States.
- Richard Loving and Mildred Jeter in 1958: This marriage overturned the state laws in the United States of America that forbid interracial marriages. They first met when Richard was 17 and Mildred was 11. In due course of time, their friendship blossomed into romance. In 1958, Mildred became pregnant and this was when the couple decided to marry in Washington DC. Later, they were arrested for violating the state laws of Virginia. After a series of setbacks, the Supreme Court eventually ruled in favor of the couple.
- Sir Seretse Khama and Ruth Williams in 1948: After the death of Khama’s father in 1925, his uncle sent him to London so that he could continue with his education. It was then that he met Ruth Williams. They shared a common interest for jazz. Soon, they began romancing and in 1948 decided to marry. This move was condemned in South Africa due to the existing apartheid laws. In 1966, he was appointed as the Knight Commander in the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth.
These success stories are actually the ones that inspired millions of people all over the world to sow the seeds of an Interracial Relationship.