“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Buffalo in Erie County, New York — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)

Mary Morris Burnett Talbert

Club woman, civil rights leader, social activist, educator 1866-1923

Mary Morris Burnett Talbert Marker image. Click for full size.
By Howard Fritzke Jr., May 14,201
1. Mary Morris Burnett Talbert Marker
Inscription.  Mary Morris Burnett the youngest daughter of Cornelius and Caroline Nichols Burnett, was born in Oberlin Ohio. She graduated from Oberlin College in 1886 at the age of nineteen. Ms. Burnett moved to Little Rock Arkansas where she accepted a teaching position at Bethel University. In January 1887, she was appointed assistant principal of Union High School becoming the first African-American female in the state of Arkansas to achieve this distinction. During her short stay in Little Rock, she had begun to receive national recognition as an educator and orator.

On September 8, 1881, Mary Burnett married William Herbert Talbert, a city of Buffalo clerk and realtor. The Talbert’s only daughter, Sarah Mae was born in 1892. Following her move to Buffalo, Mary B. Talbert launched a career as a club woman, social activist and civil rights leader.

As a devoted member of the Michigan St., Baptist Church, Talbert was instrumental in the founding of the Christian Culture Congress and served in many positions in the church, including trustee, treasurer, Sunday school teacher and organist. Mary Talbert was also the first worthy matron
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of Naomi Chapter 10, Order of the Eastern Star.

A founding member of the Phyllis Wheatley Club for Colored Woman in 1899, Talbert led this group in protesting the lack of representation for African-Americans at the Pan-American exposition. She was a founding member of the Western New York Federation of Colored Woman’s Clubs and the state-wide organization, Empire State Federation of Woman’s Clubs. Talbert served as president of the National Association of Colored Woman’s Clubs from 1916-1920. As president, she led the movement for passage of the Federal Dyer anti--lynching bill. Funding to make the Frederick Douglass home a National Memorial in Washington, D. C. Was also obtained during Talbert’s tenure.

Talbert was a board member of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and was the first woman to receive that organizations Springarn Medal in 1922. Mary Talbert died in 1923 at the age of 57. Mary Morris Burnett Talbert is buried in the Talbert family plot and her grave is marked by a simple head-stone that identifies her as “mother”.
Erected 2006. (Marker Number None.)
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: African AmericansCivil RightsEducationWomen.
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42° 55.683′ N, 78° 51.633′ W. Marker is in Buffalo, New York, in Erie County. Marker can be reached from Delaware Ave.. Forest Lawn Cemetery. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1411 Delaware Ave, Buffalo NY 14209, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Giuseppe Verdi (1813-1901) (approx. 0.2 miles away); In Memory of Millard Fillmore (approx. 0.2 miles away); All Veterans / Middle East Wars Monument (approx. 0.3 miles away); Erastus Granger (approx. 0.3 miles away); To Honor the Memory of Our Dead (approx. 0.4 miles away); Commemoration for African American Soldiers of the American Civil War (approx. 0.4 miles away); On This Day of May 30, 1991, The Semper Fidelis Post #356 (approx. 0.4 miles away); Frederick Law Olmsted (approx. 0.4 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Buffalo.
More about this marker. This marker is located an established near the final resting place of Mary Talbert, civil rights leader
Credits. This page was last revised on March 21, 2017. It was originally submitted on March 16, 2017, by Howard Fritzke Jr. of Lockport, New York. This page has been viewed 279 times since then and 26 times this year. Photo   1. submitted on March 16, 2017, by Howard Fritzke Jr. of Lockport, New York. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.

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May. 7, 2021