Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Kate Stoneman

Kate Stoneman's granite headstone stands on a slight rise above the footpath running along the south side of the Middle Ridge. In front of the monument is a bronze plaque which gives a short history of New York's first female member of the Bar.

Kate Stoneman was the first woman admitted to practice law in New York State.  After training in a private firm, her application to join the Bar was rejected because of her gender.  She then successfully campaigned to amend the Code of Civil Procedure to permit the admission of qualified applicants without regard to gender or race.  Her admission to the NYS Bar in 1886 paved the way for thousands of women and minorities who followed.  Ms. Stoneman continued her legal education by attending Albany Law School and, in 1898, became the first woman to graduate.

Albany Law School celebrates Kate Stoneman every April and maintains an informational site about her.

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