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Tue, 04.19.1887

H. Claude Hudson, Businessman born

Dr. H. Claude Hudson

Henry Claude Hudson was born on this date in 1887. He was a Black dentist, lawyer, and businessman from Marksville, Louisiana.

The son of a Louisiana slave, Hudson dedicated 60 years to civil rights. A pioneer of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, he was president of the first branch of the NAACP in Shreveport, LA.  He then moved his family to Los Angeles, and within a year, he was elected president of the L.A. branch, a term that lasted ten years. Hudson earned the title "Mr. NAACP" from Los Angeles locals who recognized him as the city's most respected Black leader.

Hudson enrolled in Loyola Law School in 1927, in the four-year evening program, at 41, and actively practiced dentistry throughout his law school career. Hudson was Loyola's first Black graduate in 1931. He never practiced law in the traditional sense but rather studied the law to provide services to the NAACP in bringing about justice and fighting for inequality.  He was instrumental in desegregating Los Angeles beaches and establishing Martin Luther King, Jr. Hospital.

Hudson founded Broadway Federal Savings and Loan, the nation's second-largest Black savings and loan association.  His son, Elbert T. Hudson, a graduate of Loyola Law School in 1953, became president of Broadway. In 1976, Hudson won Los Angeles County's highest honor, the "Distinguished Service Medal." Dr. H. Claude Hudson died in 1989 at age 102.

To Become a Dentist



The African American Desk Reference
Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture
Copyright 1999 The Stonesong Press Inc. and
The New York Public Library, John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Pub.
ISBN 0-471-23924-0

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