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In History

25 Years Ago

GW Law School celebrated the first Belva Lockwood Day, commemorating the school’s first woman law graduate and her many achievements. Lockwood, born in 1830, was admitted to the Law School in 1871 and graduated after three years. As a woman in a male-dominated field, Lockwood faced numerous obstacles and was sent her delayed diploma only after the intervention of President Ulysses S. Grant, the school’s ex-officio president. The GW Law Association for Women sponsors an annual Belva Lockwood luncheon and award in her honor.

50 Years Ago

The Student Bar Association’s Amicus Curiae reported that there were 19 new women law students at GW. “Four have found husbands,” the Amicus Curiae stated. “The rest are looking.” The list included a patent examiner, a bacteriologist, a research assistant, and a legal secretary. The youngest was 21, the oldest 56, the Amicus Curiae pointed out.

100 Years Ago

To be admitted to GW Law, students were required to be at least 18 years old and have educational training equivalent to a course in an approved high school, the Department of Law handbook stated. Tuition for the regular three-year course was $150 a year; the library fee was $2.

The Magazine gratefully acknowledges the assistance of the University Archives in the identification of interesting historical information. Readers wanting to learn more about GW Law’s history can find the University Archives Web site by accessing The site’s Historical Almanac is especially informative.