The first African-American woman credentialed to cover the White House will be honored with a life-sized statue to be erected next month in Washington, D.C.
Alice Allison Dunnigan, a Kentucky native, was the first Black female journalist to cover a presidential campaign — President Harry Truman’s whistle-stop campaign tour in 1948, the Associated Press reports. She later received credentials to cover the White House.
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As head of the Associated Negro Press’ Washington bureau for 14 years, Dunnigan supplied stories to 112 African-American newspapers across the country. She was also the first Black woman to obtain press credentials to cover Congress, the State Department, and the Supreme Court.
“Throughout Dunnigan’s career, she battled the rampant racism and sexism that dominated the mostly white and male professions of journalism and politics. She once famously stated, ‘Race and sex were twin strikes against me. I’m not sure which was the hardest to break down,’” the Newseum, the non-profit news museum in the nation’s capital that will be displaying the sculpture, said in a statement.
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Dunnigan died in 1983.
The bronze sculpture, created by fellow Kentuckian Amanda Matthews, will be displayed at the Newseum from Sept. 21 until Dec. 16, before moving to Dunnigan’s hometown of Russellville.
It will be installed on the grounds of the West Kentucky African American Heritage Center as part of a park dedicated to the Civil Rights Movement, the Newseum said.
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