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Mrs. Laura B. Lightner, photo from Boston Guardian, Niagara Movement Souvenir Edition

“Coralie wept all though the John Brown meeting. I am alarmed about the state of her nerves. You know I have courage when necessary but I haven’t enough to discuss this “Movement,” frankly, with either Coralie or Miss Ella. It is an awful thing to be colored. “

Excerpt from letter from Laura B. Lightner to Nathan Brackett and his wife, Louise, only dated Sunday, but likely was written on the last day of the Niagara Movement Meeting at Harpers Ferry from August 15 – 19, 1906. Laura Brackett Lightner was considered a co-founder of Storer along with her brother, and principal, Nathan Cook Brackett, and Louise Wood Brackett. Coralie likely refers to Coralie Franklin Cook, who graduated from Storer, taught there and was a lifelong supporter, and became a well-known education advocate, suffragist, and an early member of the NAACP. Miss Ella may have been Ella Phillips Stewart, who began her studies at Storer in 1905, and who was from nearby Stringtown, outside of Berryville, Virginia, and who later became the first African American woman to earn a degree from the University of Pittsburgh School of Pharmacy.

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