Louise Burrell Miller Residence

Louise Burrell Miller and others, acting on behalf of Miller's son Kenneth, sued the DC Board of Education in 1952 to have deaf African American children educated within the District. At the time the children, including Kenneth Miller, were being sent to the Maryland School for the Blind in Baltimore instead of DC's facility for white children: Kendall School for the Deaf on the Gallaudet College campus. The decision in Miller v. The Board of Education (U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, July 9, 1952) was for the plaintiffs. The children attended the Kendall School on a segregated basis until 1954, when the U.S. Supreme Court outlawed school segregation (Brown v. Board of Education).

Miller's lawyer was James Cobb, who became a key strategist in the landmark 1953 Supreme Court case that upheld the District's 1872 and 1873 laws outlawing segregation in public places, District of Columbia v. John R. Thompson Co., Inc. One of the individuals who wrote letters in support of Miller's suit was Paul P. Cooke, chairman of the American Veterans Committee, 1751 New Hampshire Avenue, and later president of DC Teachers College.

All of Miller's four children are deaf or hearing-impaired. Family members still reside at 1204 T Street, NW. A plaque recognizing Miller's efforts is found at the Kellogg Center at Gallaudet.


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