Layle Lane (November 27, 1893 – February 2, 1976) was an African American educator and civil rights activist.[1][2][3]


Lane was born in Marietta, Georgia in 1893 to Reverend Calvin Lane and Alice Virginia Clark Lane.[1][3] She was their fourth child. Her father was a Congregationalist minister and her mother was a teacher.[1][3] Her family left Georgia after her father was threatened to be lynched.[2] The family resettled in Knoxville, Tennessee, and three years later in Vineland, New Jersey.[1][2][3] In Vineland, Lane attended Vineland High School, where she was the first black graduate of the school.[3] Lane never married.[3] In 1976, she died in Cuernavaca, Mexico.[4]


Lane graduated from Howard University in 1916. After being unable to receive a job as a teacher in a New York public school, she returned to school earned a second undergraduate degree at Hunter College. She received her master's degree from Columbia University.[4][2][3]

Career and activismEdit

Lane became a high school teacher, teaching social studies in a New York high school.[3][2] Lane was heavily involved in activism throughout her life, and participated in many protests for African American rights and workers' rights.[3] She became an early member of the Teachers Union, and later the Teachers Guild. She served on the executive board of the Teacher's Guild.

Lane was elected the first black female American Federation of Teachers vice president. She ran five times as a candidate in the Socialist Party for public office. Three of those times were for Congress.[3][2] Lane served on the National Committee for Rural Schools.[4] She helped to plan and organize the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom in 1941. Lane ran a summer camp on her Pennsylvania farm for impoverished black children from the inner-city.[3][2][4][1]


  1. ^ a b c d e "Layle Lane papers 1933-1951". The New York Public Library - Archives and Manuscripts. The New York Public Library. Retrieved 10 October 2017.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g "United Federation of Teachers - Layle Lane". United Federation of Teachers. Retrieved 10 October 2017.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Schierenbeck, Jack. "Lost and Found: The Incredible Life and Times of (Miss) Layle Lane" (PDF). American Educator (Vol 24, No. 4, Winter 2000-2001). American Educator. Retrieved 10 October 2017.
  4. ^ a b c d "Layle Lane, Rights Leader, Teachers' Union Officer, 78". The New York Times. The New York Times. Retrieved 10 October 2017.

External linksEdit