Rev. Joseph A. DeLaine

Pastor, teacher and civil rights activist

In 1943, Rev. Joseph A. DeLaine (1898-1974), a graduate of Allen University in Columbia, South Carolina, became the founding president of the Clarendon County NAACP chapter. In 1949, he helped parents in the county fight the Summerton school district to provide adequate facilities for African American students. He was a strong force behind the Clarendon County desegregation case, Briggs v. Elliott (1952), that was eventually included in the 1954 Brown v. Board of Education U.S. Supreme Court case. After the landmark ruling, DeLaine and his family were threatened with violence and a warrant was issued for his arrest. De Laine’s civil rights work laid the groundwork for schools to be desegregated throughout the South.

Image courtesy of South Caroliniana Library

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