Lovings and Logsdons

Alumni couple's marriage parallels famous civil rights case.

John Logsdon and Gloria Newton Logsdon on a beach in the 1960s.

John Logsdon and Gloria Newton Logsdon in the 1960s.

The feature film Loving, which opens Nov. 4, tells the story of Richard and Mildred Loving, an interracial couple sentenced to prison in Virginia in 1958 for violating the state’s anti-miscegenation laws by getting married. Their one-year sentence was suspended, and the couple moved to Washington, D.C. On the Lovings’ behalf, the American Civil Liberties Union filed a motion to overturn the statute. The result was the United States Supreme Court’s 1967 landmark Loving v. Virginia decision, which invalidated laws prohibiting interracial marriage.

During the same time period at Mizzou, John Logsdon, BS PA ’63, a white man, fell in love with fellow student Gloria Newton, ’63, a black woman. At the time interracial marriage was illegal in Missouri, their home state. Like the Lovings, after graduation the pair moved to Washington, D.C., where they married in 1965, two years before the Loving v. Virginia decision. This month the Logsdons celebrate their 51st wedding anniversary.

In the following 2013 article, John Logsdon recounts the couple’s meeting and their work with the Columbia chapter of Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) in the early 1960s.

A first-person account of race relations in Columbia in the 1960s by John Logsdon, BS PA ’63

Logsdons on a ship.

John Logsdon and Gloria Newton Logsdon aboard a cruise in Turkey in September 2011.

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