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A Forward From The First Lady


A forward from First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt regarding Samuel J. Battle’s manuscript,

"This is a record of a man’s life and as he tells it, you not only see one life but you see the struggles and the victories and the defeats of a whole group of U.S. citizens. What courage it took, what remarkable stamina to be the first Colored policeman in New York City.

There were qualities of mind and heart and body that were purely personal but above everything else, there was the realization that he was fighting not for himself alone but for his people. That comes out in the pride when each “first” is won.

There are records, of course, here of people met and incidents that occurred that some people may not find very interesting but as a whole story, I think there are few people who will feel not only an interest but a pride in each hard-won victory.

I want to recommend this book to those who think that success in life comes purely by luck. In this case, it came through hard work and staunchness of purpose, and I surmise that for many people this is the only way success arrives.

At 75 years of age, Samuel J. Battle is active and still an interested and good citizen of a democracy. I hope he will continue for many years, for his example will do more to help the young people of his race who have to struggle against difficulties, than all the words that their teachers and those who try to help them can possibly speak.

Congratulations on a life well lived!"

A Forward From The First Lady

#110Battle Stories

View other stories told by today's police

In collaboration with the Black Police Experience (BPX) and the National Association of Black Law Enforcement Officers, Inc (NABLEO), we want to commemorate the heroics of Samuel J. Battle by asking black law enforcement to share their stories.  If you find a story on the Battle Continues.. timeline that you can relate to, please share.  


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Our timeline of untold stories is a collection of black law enforcement stories that will serve to illustrate their lived experiences and the need to transform police policies, practices, and consciousness. The Battle begins with Samuel J. Battle but continues as we commemorate the 110th year of blacks in law enforcement in NYC. Submit your story and help to create a pathway to justice.


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A Forward From The First Lady

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