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Eunice Carter

Updated: Aug 14, 2020

Continuing the tribute on this final day of Women's History Month, I'm putting the spotlight on a twentieth century female who is little known to most but was very accomplished in a time that still blatantly marginalized our gender in socially accepted ways.

Eunice Roberta Hunton Carter was born July 26, 1899 in Atlanta Georgia with two strikes against her; being African American and female. However, when you read her resume you can't help but applaud her determination and stamina to excel as she did carving out a niche and a name for herself in United States history.

Eunice may have been born with social negatives but the roots of her gene pool were on the plus side. She came from a line of intelligent forward thing people with a strong sense of racial and communal responsibility. She was the granddaughter of enslaved people; her paternal grandfather, Stanton Hunton, having purchased his freedom prior to the Civil War. William Alpheaus Hunton Jr, Eunice's father was an activist... Eunice's mother, Addie Waites Hunton made quite a name for herself as an active member of the NAACP

After Atlanta's bloody and deadly attack of black citizens by whites in 1906, the Huntons left Georgia relocating to Brooklyn, New York. Eunice went to college and in 1921 earned a B.A. and M.A. from Smith College in North Hampton, Massachusetts. It is during this time, while writing her masters thesis that she meets Governor Calvin Coolidge. He becomes a friend and valuable adviser.

In 1924 Eunice Hunton married Lyle Carter. Lyle was a dentist and Eunice a social worker. They had one son a few years after they were married. Eunice enrolled in Fordham University to study law. It was an auspicious achievement when she passed the New York State Bar Examine in 1934. She was the first African American female to do so.

That same year the Republicans nominated her to represent the 19th District at the state assembly. Again another first because no African American had ever been nominated by Republicans for that office. Unfortunately Eunice had a narrow loss but that did not deter her ambitious nature.


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