Reviews for We Face the Dawn
"A thoughtful historical account of a legal campaign that formed one of the main pillars for Brown v. Board of Education . . . Hill and Robinson provide exemplary—and timely—models of citizenship. A welcome contribution to the literature of the civil rights movement." Read the full review
"A legal thriller of the non-fiction variety. . .A thorough, compelling profile of the courage and diligence of the two men and their associates." Read the full review.
Virginia Lawyer Magazine
"With unobtrusive eloquence and reserved passion, Edds depicts an era during which much was accomplished and reminds us that much remains to be realized. . . .Vivid and vital, “We Face the Dawn” lays out the lessons of the past, warns of the dangers of the present and illuminates the times of two stalwart men and the splendor of their achievements." Read the full review
"Edds’ extensive use of correspondence, contemporary newspaper accounts, memos and court documents brings the era of Oliver Hill to life. The reader is presented with vibrant portrayals of Roanoke, Richmond and Washington from the perspective of successful African-American entrepreneurs, lawyers and other professionals and their business, social and religious lives in a community of neighborhoods." Read the Full Review Roanoke Times
"Written in an easily accessible way yet grounded in extensive sourcing and interviews, 'We Face the Dawn' is a well-written story about the lives of two important Virginians and the efforts by them and their legal team to advance the cause of freedom." Read the Full Review
"The story of Oliver Hill and Spottswood Robinson—and all they did to change Virginia and America—needed telling, and Margaret Edds has done a masterful job . . . Hill and Robinson and their many dedicated colleagues loved Virginia and spent their entire lives turning the Commonwealth from past to future. This book is an appropriate tribute to their efforts."
Senator Tim Kaine
"The product of prodigious research, We Face the Dawn tells the terrifically important story of a largely unheralded subject. Oliver Hill and Spottswood Robinson lie just outside the pantheon of much-studied NAACP lawyers such as Thurgood Marshall, Charles Houston, and William Hastie. Yet these two lawyers were key figures in the legal arm of the movement, and they practiced in an equally key state, Virginia. Edds has done a painstaking piece of research in unearthing their lives and careers, and her book communicates the rich details of those lives and much of their importance."
Kenneth W. Mack, Harvard Law School, is the author of Representing the Race: The Creation of the Civil Rights Lawyer:
Mt. Olive School, Pulaski, about 1948. (Corbin v. County School Board of Pulaski County, National Archives at Philadelphia)