White Southern Lady: Civil Rights Advocate

How would Princeton be different if Barbara Boggs Sigmund had lived? Her mother, Lindy Boggs, just died: 

The New Orleans Times Picayune obit writer describes Bogg’s “disarming personal charm, a gift for communicating warmth and a sense of civility that drew others as her allies, almost to their surprise

Friends said she elevated manners to an art form, and made personal charm a powerful political tool. . . But a hard substantive edge always glinted just below the surface. . . Mrs. Boggs also became famous for her tenacity — a warm and ever-gracious refusal to take no for an answer. . . 

Boggs supported civil rights, as did her daughter, who began to follow her father’s and mother’s political trajectory as mayor of Princeton Borough. Boggs quit her job in Congress in 1990 to care for Barbara who, after years of sporting an eye patch, would die of cancer that year.

Had Barbara Boggs Sigmund lived, I believe she would have — in her New Orleans drawl — done something about issues of inequality with which Princeton is still struggling. She was her mother’s daughter.


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