Reuben V. Anderson becomes the first Black person appointed to the Mississippi Supreme Court.
1985 (Jan 11)
Reuben V. Anderson was appointed to the Mississippi Supreme Court, becoming the first Black person ever to sit on the bench of that state's highest court. Anderson, who was previously a state Circuit Court Judge, was named to the court by Mississippi Governor Bill Allain to fill the unexpired term of Justice Francis S. Bowling, who retired on January 1. Bowling's term ran to the fall of 1986. Anderson, an attorney practicing in Mississippi starting in 1967, recalled that he never thought of the possibility of sitting on Mississippi's highest court. “When I first started practicing law,” Anderson said, “I had to take my diploma with me wherever I went. Judges would not allow Black lawyers to practice in a lot of courts in this state....... Back then many courthouses had separate facilities for Blacks and whites..... it makes you proud, so proud that Mississippi has come so far."