Daisy Gatson Bates Day

Sanders Proclaims Monday as Daisy Gatson Bates Day


WHEREAS: Daisy Lee Gatson Bates, was born on November 11, 1914, in Huttig, Arkansas. Bates’ life began marred by the atrocities of racism when her mother was assaulted and beaten by three white men, leaving her in the care of family friends;

WHEREAS: After marrying Lucious Christopher Bates in the early 1940s, Bates and her husband moved to Little Rock, Arkansas, where they operated the Arkansas State Press, one of the few weekly African American newspapers;

WHEREAS: Bates became president of the Arkansas National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) in 1952 and played a crucial role in desegregation across the State of Arkansas;

WHEREAS: Despite the 1954 Supreme Court ruling in Brown v. Board of Education, African American students in Arkansas who tried to enroll in white schools were frequently turned away;

WHEREAS: After careful vetting, nine students later known as the Little Rock Nine were chosen to integrate Little Rock Central High School with Bates serving as their mentor;

WHEREAS: On September 4, 1957, the Little Rock Nine arrived at Little Rock Central High School where they were met by a mob of angry white students, parents, and other members of the community. This, in combination with the Arkansas National Guard sent by Governor Orval Faubus, prevented the African American students from entering the building. It was not until September 24th that the Little Rock Nine, with the assistance of federal troops, could finally attend classes;

WHEREAS: Bates’ house was subject to gunfire, cross-burnings, and other acts of anti- integration violence; and

WHEREAS: The Arkansas General Assembly voted to replace its existing statues in the National Statuary Hall in Washington, D.C. Bates was chosen as one of the statues to be displayed, serving as a tribute to her tireless, courageous efforts.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, SARAH HUCKABEE SANDERS, Governor of the State of Arkansas, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the laws of the State of Arkansas, do hereby proclaim February 19, 2024, as


IN TESTIMONY WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Great Seal of the State of Arkansas to be affixed this 19th day of February, in the year of our Lord 2024.

2024-02-25T20:28:46+00:00 Feb 19th, 2024|In the News|