Artist: Antonio Tobias Mendez (b. 1963)
MSA SC 1545-3503
A native of Baltimore, Thurgood Marshall became the first African American to serve on the United States Supreme Court, upon his appointment by President Lyndon B. Johnson in 1967. A champion of the civil rights movement, Marshall is also remembered as one of the greatest constitutional lawyers of the twentieth century. In 1954, he successfully argued Brown v. Board of Education in the U.S. Supreme Court, which ended racial segregation in America's public schools.
This maquette (a small preliminary model) is the basis for the full-size statue of Marshall that is the central figure of the Thurgood Marshall Memorial, installed on Lawyers' Mall adjacent to the State House in 1996. The memorial also includes figures of two children representing Brown v. Board of Education, and of Donald Gaines Murray, whom Marshall defended in 1935 to desegregate the University of Maryland School of Law.