The Times podcast: She was the Rosa Parks of the 1800s

Ellen Garrison Clark sings next to a poster of Ellen Garrison Clark.
Charles Pullman sings “Troubles of the World” at a Juneteenth ceremony on June 19 that celebrated the life of 19th century civil rights activist Ellen Garrison Clark and to unveil a headstone for her grave at Mountain View Cemetery in Altadena.
(Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times)

Ellen Garrison Jackson Clark was the granddaughter of a freed man who fought in the Revolutionary War. She grew up educated and refined in Concord, Mass. Her mother was friends with families of some of America’s greatest thinkers, including Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau. So how did she end up in an unmarked grave in Altadena for 129 years?

Today, we bring you the extraordinary story of how amateur historians nationwide got together to find Clark’s final resting place — and finally got her a tombstone.


Host: L.A. Times features writer Jeanette Marantos

More reading:

She was the Rosa Parks of her day. So why was she in an unmarked grave for 129 years?

How we got the story of Ellen Garrison Jackson Clark and her courageous, unsung life

LA Times Today: The ‘Rosa Parks of Concord MA,’ discovered in an unmarked grave in Altadena

About The Times

“The Times” is made by columnist Gustavo Arellano, senior producer Denise Guerra and producers Shannon Lin, Marina Peña, Melissa Kaplan and Ashlea Brown. Our engineer is Mario Diaz. Our editors are Lauren Raab and Shani O. Hilton. Our theme song was composed by Andrew Eapen.