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Jury Service in the Commonwealth - an Ongoing Series

Presented by the Office of Jury Commissioner


JURORS OF COLOR:
MASSACHUSETTS WAS FIRST IN THE NATION

  • The first people of color to sit on a jury in The United States were two barbers from Worcester. They served in 1860.
  • Francis Clough was born in Worcester. William Jenkins  had escaped slavery in Virginia and lived in Worcester.
  • Slavery had been abolished in The Commonwealth in 1783.

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  • Judge George Lewis Ruffin of Boston was the first black judge in America (appointed 1883).

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