Monday, September 24, 2007

Eckford profile in Vanity Fair

Posted By on Mon, Sep 24, 2007 at 10:22 AM

David Margolick penned a fascinating (and really long) profile of Elizabeth Eckford that's on Vanity Fair's website today. Bafflingly, it seems to be a web exclusive. It's nowhere in the table of contents of this month's issue.

It's a pretty sweeping piece that tracks Eckford through her iconic first-day-of-school facedown with the mob, through dark struggles with depression, through her unlikely friendship with Hazel Bryan Massery and its subsequent sour dissolution, to Eckford  today. There's lots of affecting moments, though perhaps none more so than a rundown of the torment inflicted on her during the 1957 school year as recorded by vice principal Elizabeth Huckaby:

Sometime in October: Elizabeth hit with a shower of sharpened pencils. October 28: Elizabeth shoved in hall. November 20: Elizabeth jostled in gym. November 21: Elizabeth hit with paper clip. December 10: Elizabeth kicked. December 18: Elizabeth punched. January 10: Elizabeth shoved on the stairs. January 14: Elizabeth knocked flat. January 22: Elizabeth spat upon. January 29: Elizabeth attacked with spitballs. January 31: Elizabeth asks grandfather to take her home after girls serenade her with humiliating songs in gym class. February 4: Elizabeth has soda bottle thrown at her. February 14: Elizabeth attacked with rock-filled snowballs. March 7: Elizabeth hit by egg. March 12: Elizabeth hit by tomato. "She said that except for some broken glass thrown at her during lunch, she really had had a wonderful day," Mrs. Huckaby wrote at one point, apparently with a straight face.

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