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Session 2 index, 2020-10-31


Scope and Contents

This is the second session of a life history interview with Edith Crutchfield. In this interview Ms. Crutchfield reflects on her upbringing in Culpeper, Virginia, the move to Washington, D.C., in 1953 at age 17, and her life in Washington. She speaks about her experiences with segregation and discrimination in D.C. and discusses how she and her sisters helped each other transition into life in Washington. Ms. Crutchfield recalls being able to vote for the first time when the District was allowed to vote in the 1964 presidential election and relates the civil rights struggles of the 1960s to the 2020 election as well as contemporary social justice struggles. Ms. Crutchfield also discusses her time at Howard University as well as her experience at Miner Teachers College in 1955 when the school merged with Wilson Teachers College to create DC Teachers College. She also reflects on her experiences as a librarian at the FDA and DEA libraries and discusses racism and discrimination she witnessed while working for the government.


  • Creation: 2020-10-31


Language of Materials


Biographical / Historical

Ms. Edith Amanda Crutchfield, born August 28, 1936, is a retired librarian and native of Culpeper, Virginia. Ms. Edith is the daughter of John Duff Grasty and Sarah George Ross Grasty and is one of 10 sisters. She migrated to Washington, D.C. at the age of 17 after finishing high school in Culpeper and has remained in D.C. for the rest of her life. All 10 of Ms. Edith's sisters migrated north after high school and none of them returned to live in Virginia. Ms. Edith initially lived with sisters and other family upon arriving in Washington and attended Howard University for a semester before transferring to Miner Teachers College just as Miner's and Wilson Teachers College were being integrated and combined into DC Teachers College. Ms. Edith had a 30-year career as a librarian in government libraries (FDA and DOJ) and spent the last fifteen years of her career in private libraries of law firms. Ms. Edith married and had one daughter, Debra, who passed away in 2015.


From the Collection: 54.7 Gigabytes (DIG_00029)

From the Collection: 94 Files (DIG_00029)

Repository Details

Part of the The People's Archive, Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Library Repository

901 G Street NW
4th Floor East
Washington DC 20001