View Full Version : A mixed-race woman has acknowledged that she is the illegitimate daughter of ...

Monday, December 15th, 2003, 03:23 PM
I am Senator Strom Thurmond's daughter, says mixed-race woman, 78
By Marcus Warren in New York
(Filed: 15/12/2003)

A mixed-race woman has at last acknowledged that she is the illegitimate daughter of the late Senator Strom Thurmond, once America's foremost advocate of racial segregation.

Strom Thurmond

Essie Mae Washington-Williams, 78, said she had kept her father's name a secret for fear of harming the senator, who died in June at the age of 100.

In public the senator, who stepped down as a South Carolina senator only a year ago, acknowledged Mrs Washington-Williams as "a friend". Privately he admitted that she was his daughter with a black housemaid and helped her financially, she said.

Rumours that the politician, who stood for president in 1948 as a "Dixiecrat", had fathered a mixed-race child circulated for decades. Mrs Washington-Williams, a retired teacher, has until now denied any blood link, despite being grilled by reporters.

"I did not want anybody to know I had an illegitimate father," she told the Washington Post. "My children convinced me to tell the truth. I want to finally answer all of these questions that have been following me for 50 or 60 years."

Her mother, who worked as a maid at Mr Thurmond's parents' home in Edgefield, South Carolina, then strongly segregated, gave birth to her daughter at the age of 16.

Mrs Washington-Williams says she was introduced to her father when she too was 16, an encounter that was followed by years of financial aid and occasional meetings. Although she sometimes challenged him about his racial views, they "never talked politics".

As proof of their relationship, Mrs Washington-Williams is reported to have cheque stubs, documents and a 1998 letter from the senator thanking her "for the nice Father's Day note".

Monday, December 15th, 2003, 05:20 PM
LOL Ol' Strom always did have a taste for dark meat. He fathered multiple mulattos and never acknowledged it during his lifetime. He used to give them money on the quiet. Later he married (white) Miss South Carolina, who was like 20, when he was like 60. He was definitely a lecherous guy. :-P

Saturday, December 20th, 2003, 12:33 PM
Strom's buildup of being a big segregationalist and racist is mostly by the media. If you look at his career and what he really did, you'll see he was a total joke. He's the typical faux racist, who puts on airs and tells racist jokes but that's about it.