Know Our Names: The Story of Joseph W. Hatchett

Ronnesha Rodgers

<i> Joseph W. Hatchett </i>
Joseph W. Hatchett

Coming from a poor family in a segregated area in Clearwater, Hatchett achieved his dream of becoming a lawyer. Though many obstacles stood in his way, Hatchett never gave up on his dream.

In 1956, Florida was still living by the rules of Jim Crow. As a black male, Hatchett was unable to enter any white law school in Florida, so he took his talents to Howard University Law School. Yet, he still faced the obstacle of passing the Florida Bar Exam. The exam was offered at Dupont Plaza Hotel in Miami, which denied to accommodate African-Americans. Despite this obstacle, he would go on to become an attorney, and later became the first black to serve in the Florida Supreme Court.