I was sorry to hear the news that Ms. Lee has passed away. That set me thinking again about her work. I'm glad that we had the chance to publish a blog symposium about Go Set a Watchman last summer. (And I have some other thoughts about Go Set a Watchman -- and Ms. Lee's character's thoughts about constitutional law -- here.)
I look forward to more discussion in the coming days about her role in the Civil Rights Movement as our nation struggled to rise out of Jim Crow -- and about her role as a chronicler of the conflicts around the Movement in Alabama.
Maybe this is the time I should mention that I taught a case in trusts and estates earlier this spring about a white man who left his property to an African American woman -- Dees v. Metts -- in which Amasa Coleman Lee figured prominently. He had assisted the man in transferring property during life to the woman -- and later provided testimony that the man was competent when he made that conveyance. Max Cassady, a Mobile lawyer, has a good article about the case here.
Update: I just remembered a vignette about Watchman that I've been meaning to share. When I was home in Philadelphia over winter break I was in Kmart and I checked out their book section -- I'm always interested in what's offered for sale to "the masses." I was so happy to see that Watchman was there along with the romance novels and self-help books. Very exciting and testimony to how far Ms. Lee's influence stretches.