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Walter L. Gordon Jr. dies; groundbreaking lawyer in era of segregation

Walter L. Gordon Jr. dies; groundbreaking lawyer in era of segregation

The legal establishment in Los Angeles was segregated in 1937 when African American attorney Walter L. Gordon Jr. pulled on a childhood connection to set up his new practice. The former newspaper carrier was given office space "three steps" from the pressroom of the California Eagle, a black weekly founded in 1879 by an escaped slave. The newspaper's location proved fortuitous. It was on Central Avenue, "the city's black thoroughfare," Gordon later said, and he benefited from being one of the first black lawyers to hang a shingle in the city's African American community. He kept his practice in the neighborhood for 65 years, defending the famous —...

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